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Alex Stone, Group Leader - FIFA Digital Channels (Interview)

An excerpt from the interview of Alex Stone - He is an experienced Sports Communications Specialist with a demonstrated history of working in the sports industry since 2000 at The FA and FIFA. Alex is skilled in areas such as Media Relations, Public Relations, Social Media, Digital Marketing, etc.

Q) While working with The Football Association (FA), how have you seen the evolution, from traditional public relations to digital communication?


A) Before social media, there were very traditional ways to try to explain what the organization you were working for, were doing. That was obviously very competitive because if you're contacting local media, regional media, national media, whatever the topic, you're not the only one doing that. Why is your story more compelling than anybody else's? Why should that be in the newspaper? That was where I started, it was very traditional media.


Then at the FA we had a website, what that enabled us to do was tell our own stories about the work that the FA was doing, that often was not seen as attractive to the media, or often not of interest, because it wasn't going to be the kind of thing on the back pages of a national newspaper. It also enabled us to give more exposure to some of our junior national teams. At that time, of course, not so many people were interested in the younger players or younger teams. So that enabled us to cover some of those teams and explain who the new talents were, coming through.

"I always remember, seeing Wayne Rooney play on a Saturday, I think in Bristol. I was one of three people in the press box, and he scored a hat-trick. I was like, wow, this kid’s good, I had no idea that he was going to go on to the kind of career that he had."

With the advent of social media, that gave you just an additional amplification opportunity. Whether you're a football club, an association, or any business, it enables you to try and put your own message out there. It doesn't necessarily mean everybody wants to listen, or read, or watch or hear about it, but it gives you a different opportunity.

 

To watch the complete interview, please click here.

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