During the 2022-23 varsity season, the Mount Royal University Cougars soccer programs (both men's and women's) qualified for Canada West Playoffs.
In my role as Digital Media Coordinator for MRU's Cougars Athletics & Recreation department, my responsibility was to draft up, coordinate, and execute a social media strategy for the @mrucougars social media channels during the soccer teams playoff runs.
Since both the men and women's finished first overall in the Prairie Conference for Canada West, both the Men's and Women's Quarter Final games were hosted at Mount Royal University.
As hosting playoff games was a unique aspect for any school, showcasing those in-person updates of the playoff games was something to incorporate into the plan.
DESIGN CASE STUDY | Upcoming Games Graphics
A strategy that was already incorporated into the social media plan for the varsity regular season was posting a carousel of images on images or a tweet thread with images promoting all the teams' upcoming games.
The look & feel of the graphics for the 2022-23 varsity regular season and playoffs was created and established by Michal Waissmann, Creative Lead at the University Advancement department at Mount Royal University.
My job was to take that look & feel and apply it based off the posters and game day graphics that were created by my colleague Katie Mueller. For these upcoming games graphics, they needed to stand out from a standard upcoming games graphic, but still tie in visually with the look at feel.
Images Featured in Social Posts
To keep things simple and consistent, the Game Day staff that were already on site providing game updates for regular season soccer games continued with the same coverage during the Quarter Final games.
We added supplementary content, such as live updates on Twitter, video clips from the livestream, to compliment the in-person live updates that were happening at the game.
Due to health issues I was experiencing at the time and being on sick leave, I was not involved with the execution of the game day social media plan for the Quarter Final games.
Unfortunately, the women's team did not qualify for the Final Four, losing to TRU Wolfpack in a shootout.
The men, on the other hand, won their quarter final against the UFV Cascades, which meant they were advancing to the next round of playoffs called the Final Four, which were hosted in Vancouver, BC by the UBC Thunderbirds.
Game Day Graphics
Working in collaboration with colleague and Marketing Strategist Katie Mueller, we prepped the Game Day Graphics for all potential case scenarios for MRU's game on Sunday and would use the ones that corresponded with the outcome of Saturday's game against the Calgary Dinos.
This was a situation where someone else was responsible for creating the graphics and I had to make a decision at to which graphics needed to be made in advance. These were also prepped in advance to limit the amount of content creation time done on the weekend.
Adapting the Marketing Materials due to Saturday's Game
We ran into an unfortunate situation where the player original featured on Sunday's Game Day Graphic (Alex Kemsley) received a red card in the 120' of the semi final game. Because of this, he became ineligible to play in Sunday's match, which made the marketing material we made ahead of time look misleading since he wasn't going to be playing in Sunday's game.
After both semi finals were complete and the opponents had been decided, Katie Mueller updated the featured player with Niklas Liebich for the Bronze Medal Game Day Graphics versus the Alberta Golden Bears (see screenshot below).
DESIGN CASE STUDY | Placement Graphics
For the placements graphics, all potential case scenario placements, ranging from 1st place to 4th place, were all prepared in advance through Canva on the week leading up to the game days.
Preparing the Templates
Within the Canva template file (see screenshot of the Gold Medal graphic), I added a comment with notes about HEX values for the Duotone Effect that was applied so that if someone else besides myself had to go in there and make the change to the graphic.
I also learned early on from my medical leave during Quarter Finals the previous week that anything can happen and that you need to be prepared in case someone else besides yourself needs to step in to prepare graphics.
Preparing the Final Graphic
The photo used was captured by photographer Bob Frid on behalf of the UBC Thunderbirds and incorporated into the template that was premade in Canva. Due to the horizontal nature of the photo, I made the decision to expand the photo the fill the entire canvas area so that the image was able to capture as many players as possible.