There are 365 days in a year, yet somehow it felt like 2020 had 3,650. Fear not, however! The year that was is almost over and fortune is sure to change – we hope! To prepare you for 2021, we’ve previewed some of the big storylines we’ll be watching in the new year. From MLS expansion to gambling and digital media to women’s soccer, the soccer world will be abuzz with action as teams, leagues, brands, and fans look to make up for lost time.
In the following videos we’ve picked one topic and discussed headlines, while also looking into a crystal ball to make a prediction or two for 2021.
MLS salvages 2020 season, looks ahead to expanded league
Kudos to the league and its teams who successfully pulled off the MLS is Back Tournament, as well as the rest of the season and playoffs. As focus shifts to the next season, we discuss the the impact on league revenues, sponsorship, and Austin’s entrance to the league.
Gambling expected to have bigger role in American soccer
A longstanding part of the international soccer experience, legally betting on soccer here in the U.S. is still in its infancy. We expect big changes in 2021 and discuss why, as well as some of the key stakeholders to keep an eye on.
Expect changes in how social media platforms are used
According to our team, one of the biggest things to watch for in 2021 is what regulations are put in place by the government that effect how we use social media. What other digital and social storylines are there to keep an eye on? Watch below!
Investment, sponsor growth, expansion in women’s soccer
Like MLS, the NWSL has expansion to be excited about in 2021. Racing Louisville and Angel City FC join the fold, while the Utah Royals make their way back to the Kansas City market. Investment, both from new ownership and from brands, will continue to increase next year. One complication that will be interesting to watch, however, is the degree to which schedules are congested with league play, Olympics, and other international competitions all happening around the same time period.
Soccer marketing stories that explain 2020
Before we officially close the door on 2020, I figured I’d round up some of our favorite stories from the year that was in case you missed any or would like to revisit. From cardboard cutouts to Zoom and everywhere in-between, 2020 is a year we won’t soon forget. On behalf of everyone here at GESM, I thank you for reading our content this year and all years prior. We’ll see you on the other side!
- 2020 MLS jersey and sleeve partners
- 2020/21 Premier League jersey sponsors
- Volkswagen announces Team VW, continued soccer support
- Understanding the social media value of eMLS
- Ally Bank invests heavily in Charlotte, MLS
Covid Changes the Game
- GESM adjusts to new reality
- Covid forces brands to react
- With no fans in stands, soccer teams get creative
- Soccer team uses Zoom to create virtual crowd
- Barstool strikes digital gold with Coach Duggs
- GESM Zoomcast: Our favorite brand, team, league activations during covid
- What will soccer marketing look like after COVID-19?
Digital / Social Media
- Value of TikTok for brands, teams
- Burger King leverages FIFA, Stevenage
- Schalke’s “Choose Blue” campaign as Bundesliga returns