Over the years, the popularity of swimming, indoor sports and field sports decreased. Although, more stable than other field or team sports, the same holds for football. Market research shows that it’s not the love for the game that vanishes over time. It is much more the case that the traditional supply of football in the Netherlands doesn’t match the changing preferences of people preferring to play sports individually, based on their own schedule.
The Dutch football-landscape is uniquely organised with over 3.000 football-clubs, bringing together over 1.000.000 football players (male and female) every weekend. But the structure also inhabits a number of rigid features in the way it is distributed and organised - yearly memberships (as opposed to pay-per-plays), weekend leagues (as opposed to working day leagues), old-fashioned facilities and service-models and traditional (official) football forms and games.
In a five-day-sprint with the core members of KNVB’s marketing and football operations. We moved quickly from user research through wireframes, design and development to a testable mock-up and prototype.
The process resulted in a new and flexible alternative for the football players in the Netherlands. A concept that let’s you choose when, where and in what form you want to practice your favourite sport in close partnership with existing, local football clubs. We introduced playing football according to the model of a gym, powered by self-educated trainers and premium football necessities. Still working with the original name of the project (“Free Football Players”).
In a subsequent two-day-sprint we developed the first directions for marketing, branding and positioning of they concept. Eventually renaming it to kicks.
Based on the two sprints we designed and developed a first version of the platform of kicks. Showcasing the new forms of supply (individual trainings and small 6-weekly leagues for both men and women), enabling football lovers to smoothly pick and book their personal, weekly football moment. Focusing on the city of Utrecht first. In the mean time, the KNVB partnered with local football-clubs in Utrecht, recruited and educated dedicated kicks football trainers.
Founded on the learnings in Utrecht we expanded our reach to Amsterdam, while at the same time strongly optimising the onboarding of users, the booking process and contents of our offerings (on the pitch). Moreover, we made the decision to increase focus on the individual propositions (instead of team propositions) - and to start building our growth-engine around local clubs.
Currently kicks offers individual trainings on 4-5 locations (clubs) in Utrecht and 4-5 in Amsterdam. Users are actually and repeatedly paying for kicks and approximately 60% of the users return for more. Meanwhile, we’re continuously optimising the onboarding and activation of users. Next steps include the introduction of on-pitch and online gamification features for the users and the roll-out of a more diversified portfolio of individual offerings.
kicks - playing football on-demand.