Players are using the online #SquadBooster portal to find grassroots football clubs to join, and the service is pivotal to achieving one of our key goals - simply to get more people, of all abilities, playing the local game.
Launched in 2010, #SquadBooster appeals to both players and clubs. New players are browsing live classified adverts and matching themselves up with a team, while clubs are attracting new faces when their adverts are shared online and on social media.
Individuals looking to take part in football for the first time access the service, as do those keen to get back into the game after a spell on the sidelines. Adverts also appeal to players seeking more game time elsewhere. Users of the service are from all levels of adult male, adult female, boys’ and girls’ football and #SquadBooster also incorporates Futsal, Soccability and Walking Football.
It takes just three minutes for a club to complete the online form, which has been used over 2,000 times, with a 100% completion rate. These adverts are then published on the County FA website and are split into four local regions to make it easier for players to find a club close to them.
In addition, adverts are hugely backed by social media activity, especially on Twitter, where individual tweets are shared using the highly-active #SquadBooster hashtag. This is used every day by a growing number of users, generating millions of interactions every year.
Essex County FA Marketing & Communications Officer, Chris Evans, is proud of the growth of the service since it’s introduction, explaining: “#SquadBooster is a true success story - it’s considerably more popular than we could have imagined when it was launched a decade ago.”
“But we’re still gathering ongoing user feedback to ensure it continues to be fully-optimised. We have ambitious plans for #SquadBooster, which has a huge part to play in our organisation achieving the strategic participation targets we set ourselves in the future.”
If you’re a player looking to join a club, or a team seeking new players, browse the latest live classified adverts or submit one for your own team. Opportunities are also shared via @EssexCountyFA using the #SquadBooster hashtag on Twitter, and a weekly digest of new adverts can be found by searching for ‘EssexFootball’ on Facebook.