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How football clubs should do YouTube videos: Borussia Dortmund

How football clubs should do YouTube videos: B. Dortmund

German team Borussia Dortmund have used an innovative way of creating some pre-match buzz ahead of last night’s Champions League group stage match. Dortmund – a team who are famous for their passionate match day atmosphere and the highest average attendance in Europe – launched a YouTube video to welcome opposition fans to their stadium.

The video has quickly gained views over night with traffic coming from footballing blogs, forums and Reddit – obtaining 120,728 views in less than 48 hours. Whilst this number isn’t ground breaking – it certainly is a good figure for a 2:24 video that really is just a compilation of the group stage draw, past Champions League games at the stadium and a welcome message for each of the clubs.

This isn’t a ground breaking video, nor is it a ground breaking concept – however, it works and it is now their 8th most popular video from over 150+ videos on their YouTube channel and continuing to grow. Furthermore it has obtained 227 comments – largely positive from fans all around the globe talking about the atmosphere at the Westfalenstadion stadium, how passionate the fans are and many recommending a visit.

So why does this work and why is it important?

Too many clubs seem to forget that they are part of a bigger picture, it isn’t always about your club – it’s about the experience. Football is entertainment and in the same way cinema’s launch trailers to create buzz, raise awareness and sell tickets for new releases. Football clubs need to take this kind of strategy if they want to engage with their fans and get real return on investment in the future.

Football is entertainment, so clubs must use content to create excitement, curiosity and wonder.

For the Borussia Dortmund example, the video has been a success because it has these core elements:

  • – Anticipation: Released just ahead of the 1st group stage match, feeding on the eagerly awaiting football fans who had most likely been scouring the web for all of the information they could find about the team and their competitors ahead of the match.

  • – Focus on Fans: Dortmund have a great team, but even better – their fans. The atmosphere on a Champions League night at the stadium is very special and the fans are the teams greatest asset. It’s no surprise that the video heavily focused on the colours, chants and sheer noise of them.

  • – Create a sense of wonder: The Dortmund video has picked out some of the greatest moments for the team in recent Champions League campaigns. By pulling at the heartstrings and emotions of those nostalgic moments, they are appealing to feelings – a powerful ally when it comes to renewing/buying match tickets!

  • – International reach: The video works as it feeds the whole footballing community – there welcoming of the clubs shows the friendly sentiment behind the club, but also recognises that the beautiful game is a global sport and we should be more like a family. It’s not wonder that so many of the comments come from clubs all around the world praising the club and their fans.

  • – Authenticity: The video doesn’t sell tickets, merchandise, content or membership to their online TV channel – it sells the experience and entertainment. It gets Dortmund fans excited, as well as the opposition – even neutrals as it digs into the very passionate and emotive state of football fanatics. It feels more authentic and trust worthy than an ad for the new team calendar.

  • – Pride: Football is a tribal sport, nothing has been ever so clear to football marketing professionals. This video celebrates the fans, the moments of skill, the history and above all most the genuine pride at being in the competition. Dortmund fans will look forward to the game a little more, chant a little louder, and ultimate spend a bit more.


Sean Walsh

Founder of and leading Football Social Media expert.

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