Colin Kelly: Launching LA-LAFC

Colin Kelly: Launching LA-LAFC

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Colin Kelly is Director of Digital at a soccer team who are yet to play a game.

LAFC will kick-off their first MLS season in March 2018. But, unlike most of the recent expansion franchises, they are an entirely new club.

For the content team this one huge blank sheet of paper, when I spoke to Colin, he had barely met the playing staff.

Colin Kelly,  Director of Digital, LAFC

Colin Kelly,  Director of Digital, LAFC

So, how do you create a fresh and engaging soccer tale in Tinseltown, the storytelling capital of the world? On the sporting front, two NFL teams have arrived in LA in recent years and one biggest names in US soccer is right on their doorstep

Still, LAFC have a star-studded ownership group, a nationally known-coach, a soccer-lovers stadium on the way and soaring ambition

But will they fly in the City of Angels?


0.45 Introduction

1.50 Colin’s describes his job

2.01 Not having a team to tell a story about. Finding a club philosophy.

2.30 “The story who are trying to tell is the city of Los Angeles. The city has become the hero”

3.43 Whether the story has come from the fans or the front office

4.33 What the fans want from their club? "They want openness, an authentic football experience in LA, a quality team"

5.01 The ready-made rivalry with LA Galaxy

6.44 How LAFC are trying to tell a different story to LA Galaxy on social media? "We decided we’d be true to the sport and true to the city. Those are our guardrails."

8.10 Building up the teams

8.29 The ownership of the incredible ownership group.

9.25 Not using Will Ferrell too much

9.45 Carlos Vela and the Hispanic market

10.41 Coach Bob Bradley and how he introduced himself to LAFC

11.21 Getting out into the community in LA

14.11  The construction of LA’s new stadium and “The Keyhole” allowing a view of downtown

Artist's impression of LAFC's stadium. see The Keyhole through the gap in the far corner

Artist's impression of LAFC's stadium. see The Keyhole through the gap in the far corner

15.36 The English nature of the stadium

16.27 Creating content around stadium. A sweet and safe spot. For live webcams click here

17.28 The content plan for the home opener

18.42 The unique opportunity of starting a football club

19.15  Learning lessons from newer clubs Atlanta, Orlando, NYCFC etc

20.07 “I am not worried about our total number of followers. We are much more interested in engagement metric and I have buy-in from management in that.”

20.51 The development of supporter groups. The 19-year-old who started a group that is now the biggest LAFC possess

22.14 The early events that the club have created for supporters’ groups

23.06 Choosing the colours and the badge. The fans involvement

23.56 The story of wings in the badge

24.12 NFL returning to LA and the crowded market. "There has not been a new open-air stadium in downtown LA since 1963"

25.21 Why fans are easier to engage directly than the local media. "We have found that blogger and YouTubers fill the gaps"

27.17 The importance of the YouTube TV deal. “Strategically it looks well down the road and suits the demographics of cord-cutters"

27.59 How the deal works

28.28 Just passing 20,000 deposits for season tickets. “I imagine we are tracking well ahead of other MLS markets”

29.19 Plans to develop after year one. “17 home games is not enough to make a difference in their lives. Whether it is music, food art or fashion, we would like to be more than a soccer club and be part of the LA community”

30.05 The pressure to produce quality. "Content has to be good here in LA, people are watching very closely"

30.42 Growing the content department

31.23 Why LA are deliberately targeting Instagram

32.03 On the relief of final kicking off

32.56 Defining success for the club and the digital department in 2018. “We are not looking to win an award we are just looking to create meaningful content for our fans”





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