Media, Recruitment and Analysis: Why all clubs should align their approach to data

Here at Twenty3, we value efficiency. Everything we do is geared towards making it easier for people to do a better job. It is why we developed two versions of our Toolbox. 

For Media companies looking to enhance their offering by supplementing their content – whether it is written, video, social or broadcast – we have the Content Toolbox. This provides users with the ability to do lots of things, most notably to produce customisable graphics that inform audiences, spark conversations and appeal to sponsors. 

This is used by some of the juggernauts of the content industry including Sky Sports, LiveScore and Squawka.

We also have the Analytics Toolbox. This was put together with analysts in mind as we look to help optimise and automate their workflows and give them back precious time. Our Power Reports tool, for example, speeds up processes that would usually take up hours of admin while the Event Lab gives analysts the ability to manipulate data in a unique way to dive deeper into their analysis. 

A host of Premier League clubs have signed up to this, with Burnley being the latest name to join the party

Sporting Kansas City were the first MLS side to come onboard and they’re using our offering in the most innovative way so far. Sporting KC have the Media side of the club, the Technical team AND Recruitment department using the Toolbox, with the cost split across all parties. 

Kerry Zavagnin, Sporting Kansas City Assistant Coach, explained why the club opted for this approach:

“The ability for SKC to pursue a vertically aligned organization both on and off the field has driven us from the beginning. Fortunately, we have found a partner in Twenty3 who will support us in the pursuit of these objectives. 

“The Analytics Toolbox will allow our Technical and Recruitment departments to gain more valuable insights from the multiple data providers currently used in the club. In addition, the Content Toolbox will allow us to create more meaningful content for our fans. We look forward to developing these ideas and more with Twenty3.”

Sam Kovzan, Sporting KC’s Content Producer, also offered his take on the benefits:

“The Twenty3 Toolbox will give Sporting Kansas City an excellent opportunity to inform and engage our supporters like never before. Through this dynamic platform, we are better positioned to create compelling visual content for our television broadcasts, social media channels, web properties and at Children’s Mercy Park during home matches.”

Now, you regularly hear directors of football, managers, coaches and players talk about ‘identity’ and the importance of having one. They reference it in many different ways – style, philosophy and ethos – but there is joined-up thinking between everyone involved in order to ensure clubs have the best chance of success. 

Reel off a list of the best teams in the world and even the most casual of fans would be able to tell you what their style is. That is the result of everybody involved buying into the idea and doing everything they can to ensure it is executed seamlessly, irrespective of the idiosyncrasies of each individual’s role.

While it’s widely accepted that this process is key to success on the pitch, the same message doesn’t always seem to work as well off the pitch, which is something we’ve discovered through our role in the football data industry.

For example, Recruitment teams may favour an event data company and also want to make the most of physical and tracking data from another, while Analysis departments often have their own preference and opt for data and tools from other providers. You then have Media departments who can be something of an afterthought and often use a handful of graphic templates from yet another provider but with limited access to data.

Clearly, there is a disparate approach to data provision within clubs with individual teams (often consisting of very few people) attempting to achieve their respective objectives with their own methods and tools. In fairness, there wasn’t previously an all-encompassing solution to enable ‘joined up thinking’ across clubs. But, we believe there is now.

‘Bundling’ the Analytics and Content Toolbox ensures Twenty3 can be, and already is, a one-stop solution for football clubs. It guarantees the brand is consistent regardless of whether something is being shared externally or is simply a report for internal use only. But, most importantly, it spreads the various benefits of data across multiple people and teams within an organisation in a consistent, cost-effective manner, ensuring clubs are getting more bang for their buck.

By splitting the cost, all departments can improve and scale their output. It is, by definition, an efficient way to spend what is usually a limited budget. Why spend more when you can spend smart? At a time where there is pressure on executives to run football clubs in a more sustainable fashion, decisions like this make sense.

From a club Media perspective, this makes achieving a return on investment easier, particularly through highly desirable ‘visual real estate’. This is something Andrew Cox touched upon in his interview series with Twenty3 recently

While on the Analytics and Recruitment side, clubs can extract more actionable insight and make better decisions, quicker.

Increased efficiency, streamlined workflows, more detailed analysis, different ways to engage fans and more opportunities to add value to sponsors. What more could you want? 

If you work at a professional football club and would like to explore how the Twenty3 Toolbox could help you and your colleagues, please don’t hesitate to request a demo here.