As March draws to a close and Twitter’s Gender Pay Gap Bot finally begins to recover, I wanted to take a look at the winners and losers of International Women’s Day from a sporting focus.
The focus this year was #breakthebias and all across the world, companies jumped at the chance to promote just how female-friendly they are.
And with the rise of women’s sport, this was surely a chance for athletes, sponsors, broadcasters, rights-holders etc to shine a light on what they’re doing to #breakthebias.
So who got it right?
- The Fair Game Group which was set up by different football clubs committed to improving the governance of the game used the day to release a report which showed that two-thirds of England and Wales’ leading clubs have all-male boards. They found that clubs were missing out on revenue because they were not effectively catering for or marketing to female fans.
- Royal London was one of the few brands that developed some content specifically to celebrate IWD. This video celebrates Royal London’s work with women and sport, calling out the one-year anniversary of its partnership with the British & Irish Lions to investigate whether a women’s Lions team can be formed.
- Women in Sport published a fascinating report on how to keep teenagers interested in the sport. It’s a tough day to get cut-through but this message seemed to strike a chord with the media, and rightly so.
- Marketing agency CPB London created a lovely campaign that although not particularly relevant to women and sport, still has a very relevant message – imagine a world where gender makes no difference.
Who got it wrong?
- New Zealand rugby. Not only did they ignore the amazing female rugby players in favour of promoting the men’s team’s support staff, they then used images of All Blacks who, it’s safe to say, wouldn’t be considered the shining lights of New Zealand rugby, with one having been arrested and pleaded guilty for injuring a woman and another who cheated on his wife. They apologised two days later. All Blacks on Twitter: “We are listening. https://t.co/CAE6EhVjFt” / Twitter
- The FA. I feel a bit sorry for The FA. They obviously thought they were doing a good thing – releasing a video featuring female footballers discussing the world of women’s football. At 8 minutes long, it’s pretty long but the thing that stood out for a lot of people was the lack of ethnic diversity – Exclusive: FA apologises as players complain about lack of diversity in International Women’s Day video (telegraph.co.uk) A stark reminder that diversity is not just about males and females.
Image taken from CPB London