Major League Soccer today announced the launch of its new marketing campaign, “For Club and Country.”
The campaign, which will include multiple creative elements, television spots, digital advertising, social content and storytelling, will be rolled out throughout the course of the MLS season. The campaign debuted this week with a billboard in Times Square in New York, along with significant online activation.
“For Club and Country,” created in-house, lets soccer fans know that they can watch many of the American and international stars of this summer's FIFA World Cup play in Major League Soccer in the lead up to the biggest sporting event in the world.The campaign will be supported by all five of MLS’ national broadcast partners: ESPN, NBC Sports, Univision, TSN and RDS, as well as all regional MLS broadcast partners. In addition, MLS digital channels -- MLSsoccer.com, MLS+, MLS’ content creation arm, and KICKTV -- will play a leading role with the campaign.
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“Soccer is different from other sports in that a player can play for both club and country,” said MLS Chief Marketing Officer Howard Handler. “This campaign speaks to the fact that many MLS stars will be representing their countries this summer in Brazil at the World Cup. To prepare for the world’s most popular tournament, fans only have to look in their own backyard.”
This campaign captures the true essence of MLS through a patriotic lens in a World Cup year. The visual elements reflect the authenticity, integrity, inclusiveness, possibility and excellence of Major League Soccer, its players and its fans, who combine to characterize the sport in the United States and Canada.
In addition to the primarily online campaign, the “For Club and Country” thematic will be featured on television, in print and in-stadium across North America, capitalizing on the attention the World Cup will receive from North American soccer fans this summer. Running before, during and after the tournament, the campaign aims to entice fans of the world’s most popular sport to align with and support their domestic league.
March to Brazil and the hashtag #ItAllStartsHere are additional elements to the new campaign designed to launch the season.
“We’re at an inflection point at MLS – we’ve got magical stadiums, we’re investing in world-class players and we’re on a path to becoming one of the best leagues in the world,” said Handler. “In a World Cup year, all of these things are coming together. The World Cup will captivate hundreds of millions of fans. MLS players represent the foundation of the U.S. Men’s National Team headed to Brazil – Michael Bradley, Clint Dempsey, Landon Donovan and several other stars from around the league. We're launching a campaign and creating a lot of content to connect with as many of these fans and prospective fans as possible.”
MLS’ first nationally televised game will take place this Saturday, March 8 when Sporting Kansas City visits Seattle Sounders FC (3:00 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network).