The best ways to show off your players' personalities

Personalities are infectious. Here's how clubs across England are using their access to show players in a different light.

The best ways to show off your players' personalities

There's an old sales phrase that "people buy people". We're drawn to other people, and there's nothing we like more than seeing them smile and enjoying themselves. I spoke about it when discussing fan-first content earlier this year.

What I haven't gone into detail with, however, is how clubs are using players themselves in their content.

Why personalities matter

As well as liking to see people in content, particularly star names, there are other benefits to having players in content.

For teams, it increases visibility. Especially if you have a player with a big following - such as Lucas Paquetá at West Ham who has more followers than the club does.

For players, it's about showing off your personal brand. If you've got an eye on sponsorship or commercial opportunities, you want to take every opportunity to show the world what you're like. It's never a bad thing to be more marketable.

If you're a fan, seeing your team's players out of their natural on-pitch environment can make you feel closer to them. And it can make you feel like you know them better too.

Here are the ways you can make most of the opportunities that happen in a normal week.

Arrival content

A few clubs are doing good arrival content that doesn't just rely on footage of players walking into a stadium.

At Exeter, they set questions for them to answer. These are often themed, such as this one around movies during Oscars season.

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It doesn't need to stop there though. Before one game players were asked who they'd least like to be stuck in a lift with. After receiving a lot of nominations, the club were inspired to launch a new series where goalkeeper Shaun MacDonald actually spends time in a lift with those who nominated him.

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This type of content only comes about if you take the time to experiment and let personalities come through. It obviously takes buy-in from the players themselves.

At Tottenham Hotspur, the arriving players are often set challenges to complete. In this case, a putting challenge in honour of the Masters.

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This example from Spurs goes one step further by also showing the players in 'normal' clothes. That's a pretty big insight into the type of people they are.

The most common approach from clubs is a simpler point of view video showing them walking in. Leeds published a textbook example of it for their recent game.

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These are still good ways to show the individual players' personalities. Seeing the different ways they interact with staff and a bit of how they are behind the scenes is always interesting.

At the training ground

You don't just need to capture players being put through their paces and working on drills. The training ground is a good place to grab players away from the pressures of a match day.

In Brighton's case they were filming in time to catch an opportunistic shot of a player just being themselves.

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You could also catch snippets of conversation when players play up for the camera, giving us an insight into their relationships. That's what Watford managed this week.

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You also get the chance to try different bits. Crystal Palace turned two awards into a short piece where the players had to guess which one they had won.

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Again, it's a different way of showing the players' relationships. You can't script or plan these things.

At the final whistle

In this case, full-time celebrations are only really useful if the team's won. Otherwise you don't get the kind of reactions you'd likely want to broadcast.

The important thing is to get onto the pitch and get among the action, and it means you can get quick snippets like Bristol City managed.

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And then be on hand for the triumphant return to the dressing room afterwards, in Newcastle's case.

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Use your access and show fans the players in these unguarded moments. It'll increase closeness and build the players' own brands - you'll soon find they're all trying to be front of centre of your ideas.