Opinion

If you’re not the best, know where your value lies

What does half of the English Premier League football teams combined have in common with Palmers FC, a Sunday league team based in Thurrock, Essex?

Roughly the same number of subscribers to their YouTube channels.

Don’t believe us? Take a look at the numbers below.

We looked at the YouTube channels of the following English Premier League clubs (YouTube channel subscribers in brackets); Sunderland AFC (14,703), Everton FC (39,302), Hull City FC (10,235), Middlebrough FC (10,938), West Bromwich Albion FC (12,248), Burnley FC (5,808), Swansea City AFC (19,210), Crystal Palace FC (21,156), AFC Bournemouth (10,932), Watford FC (11,268). That’s a total subscribers of 155,800.

Palmers FC YouTube channel has 153,720 subscribers!
(numbers correct at 08/09/16)

Ok, so Palmers FC are popular on YouTube, but who are they and why do they have so many subscribers?

Palmers FC are a Sunday league team based in Thurrock, Essex. Every match is recorded on a camera which is placed on the halfway line and then the highlights along with a commentary are uploaded to their YouTube channel. It’s a simple premise, but it’s extremely popular. So why would a Sunday league team’s YouTube channel be nearly as subscribed to as half of the English Premier League teams combined?

 

It’s all about creating great content, but importantly relatable content.

The videos of Palmers FC aren’t showing elite level football, they don’t have top of the range cameras which capture the action from every conceivable angle, and there aren’t thousands and thousands of spectators at matches. However, what they are is:
• accessible – the videos aren’t of elite players who seem to be living in another world
• relatable – many of us have played Sunday league football, or at least football in a park, and so can relate to the videos
• simple – the videos are from one spot on the touchline, as if you were stood there watching the game
• witty – the commentary at times is hilarious, poking fun at the Palmers FC players in a way that you feel part of the team
• authentic – these guys know they aren’t the best footballers in the world, but they don’t claim to be, and that’s the point.

Palmers FC, either by design or by chance, have found a format through which they are able to grow an increasingly successful football brand. The fact that the football isn’t elite level is the point, and why they are popular. We can relate to them, many of us have been like them, it may even bring back memories of our own footballing years.

You don’t need to be the best at what you do to shape a brand in which people will relate to. The important thing is to identify the value that people will see in what you do, and focus on that. The value in Palmers FC’s content is that the viewers feels like that either could be, or was once, them.

 

Read a recent BBC article on Palmers FC and Hashtag United

Image © Paul Flannery

 

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