Manchester United hunts first creative director

UK's biggest football club wants someone with decade's experience working in agencies.

Manchester United: suffered relative decline on pitch in recent years
Manchester United: suffered relative decline on pitch in recent years

Manchester United, the UK’s biggest football club, has launched a search for its first in-house creative director to join its marketing team and deliver "world-class" campaigns.

The creative director would report to Ali Edge, the club’s director of brand and marketing, and would be tasked with delivering direct-to-consumer and business-to-business campaigns, from strategy to executions.

In a job posting on LinkedIn, Manchester United said it is looking for someone with "at least 10 years' agency or related experience" to fill the role, which would be based at either the club’s headquarters in Old Trafford or in London’s Mayfair. Ed Woodward, the club’s executive vice-chairman, mostly works at the London office.

Manchester United said: "This is a brand new and exciting role for Manchester United, an opportunity for someone to join the brand and marketing leadership team and drive world-class creative, operating both conceptually and strategically.

"Being a global brand and an elite sports club with diverse commercial partners, the work flowing through the team is vast, diverse, challenging and high-profile, with the need to consistently both perform at the highest level and create world-class output."

Although Manchester United is the UK’s top football club in terms of revenue and global fanbase, it has suffered a relative decline in terms of sporting achievements since 2013, when legendary team manager Sir Alex Ferguson retired. The latest Deloitte Football Money League survey, published today (Tuesday), warned that Manchester United is "at risk" of losing its financial supremacy in the UK, due to its absence from the Uefa Champions League competition of elite European teams. 

Almost half (44%) of Manchester United’s £627m revenue in the last financial year is accounted for by commercial activities. The majority of this comes from brand sponsorship (63%), with the remainder from retail, merchandising, clothing sales and product licensing revenue. 

The club’s DTC business has grown in importance since the internet created new channels to communicate directly with fans. In summer 2018, Manchester United launched its official mobile app, which features exclusive content and behind-the-scenes footage. It has also produced its own pay-TV channel, MUTV, since 1998 and boasts millions of followers on Instagram (33 million), Twitter (21 million) and Facebook (72 million).

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