DFL takes innovative approach to reach international media with “Virtual Media Visits”

The digital media visit included interviews with Eintracht’s Japanese players Daichi Kamada and Makoto Hasebe
The two-day programme of the Virtual Media Visit with Eintracht Frankfurt included interviews with Eintracht’s Japanese players Daichi Kamada and Makoto Hasebe.

Over the past 14 months, the DFL has been exploring a range of digital options to ensure global media experience the best of the Bundesliga, despite restricted travel.

23 April 2021 – The Coronavirus pandemic has caused the entire sports industry to redefine its daily practices and employ creative solutions in all areas of production. From health protocols to video camera setup, football has adapted to the new parameters, both on and off the pitch. For international PR, the primary question was how to continue creating opportunities for the media to interact with the Bundesliga’s global stars and local heroes.

In previous years, the DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga has run regular “media visits”, for journalists to experience the Bundesliga in person. However, given the restrictions imposed because of the virus, the DFL sought online solutions.

Since March 2020, the DFL has organised regular virtual round tables, bringing together groups of international media to speak with Bundesliga players, coaches and officials. Taking this approach one step further, the DFL created a “Virtual Media Visit” concept, such as the one experienced by 15 members of the Japanese media who were invited to Deutsche Bank Park, so that they could go behind the scenes at Eintracht Frankfurt, one of the Bundesliga’s most historic and storied clubs, as well as gaining insights into one of the biggest football leagues in the world.

The virtual Media Visit included a private tour of Deutsche Bank Park in Frankfurt.

In March, the DFL Group teamed up with Eintracht to put on a two-day programme, exclusively for the Japanese media. The visit included interviews with Eintracht’s Japanese players Daichi Kamada and Makoto Hasebe, Head Coach Adi Hütter, as well as exclusive opportunities to speak with club and league executives such as Frankfurt Board Member Fredi Bobic and Bundesliga International CEO Robert Klein.

Private tour and look behind the scenes

In addition to the interview sessions, the visit also included a private tour of Deutsche Bank Park, as well as access to a live stream of Eintracht training. The media could also watch some of the Bundesliga’s shoulder programming, such as Bundesliga Weekly, produced in-house and available for global broadcast partners.

Peer Naubert, DFL Vice President of Marketing, said: “The media tells the great stories of the Bundesliga every Matchday and helps spread awareness and excitement of our league to millions of fans around the world. Though we couldn’t welcome media across to Germany this season, it was a great privilege to speak with them digitally and offer a behind the scenes look at one of our most in-form clubs. We look forward to inviting more media to connect with the Bundesliga, both virtually and in person, for many years to come.”

15 members of the Japanese media had the chance to speak with club and league members such as Eintracht’s Head Coach Adi Hütter (left) and Marc Hindelang, Head of Press Relations, Eintracht Frankfurt (middle).

The Bundesliga aims to be seen as the world’s most innovative league. From Bundesliga Match Facts powered by AWS to introducing the latest advancements in state-of-the-art camera technology, the German top flight is committed to maintaining its position as a leader in cutting edge digital developments. Virtual Media Visits also reflect this ambition to be innovative, and the DFL continues to look for further ways to reach its ever-growing international audience.