Early March saw an inventive initiative from the Swedish women’s football team which replaced the players’ names on the back of their shirts with empowering messages in a kit campaign that aims to inspire women.
The #InYourName campaign, which was a collaboration between the team, the Swedish Football Association and its kit partner Adidas, saw each national team player chose a quote/tweet from prominent Swedish women to be printed on the back of their shirt where their own name would typically feature.
The squad and the Swedish FA launched the initiative with the aim of inspire young women across the country to believe more in themselves and in their ability to achieve their goals.
The campaign, which was developed with agency Edelman Deportivo, launched with a PR push, focused on a match and was supported across social media with the hashtag #InYourName.
For example, the back of Swedish captain Lotta Schelin’s shirt features a quote from Swedish politician Gudrun Schyman: ‘Never look down on someone unless it is to help her up’.
— Magdalena Eriksson (@MagdaEricsson) February 28, 2017
‘The national team shirt is an important symbol and it constantly reminds us that we can win whatever game it is in whatever competitions,’ commented Schelin.
‘I think it is great that we can join forces with other strong women and that we together can show that everything is possible. There is always a need to show young women that it is possible to succeed and that no one should feel limited in what they can achieve and particularly not because of their sex.’
While midfield star Lisa Dahlkvist’s shirt carries the words of Swedish singer Zara Larsson: ‘Believe in your damn self’.
— Katie K Snapp (@skirtstrategies) March 31, 2017
Other quotes include:
— Alejandra Osorio ∞ (@ammaleja) April 10, 2017
— amightygirl (@amightygirl) March 8, 2017
The team’s individual jerseys will be put on sale on International Women’s Day (8 March) at the end of the final match in the annual Algarve Cup – where the Swedish women’s team compete for the championship title.
The Swedish FA says that 10% of the proceeds will go to Swedish organisations supporting young female athletes.
The initiative, which builds on the success of the Swedish women’s team’s at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio (where they out-performed their male counterparts to finish second) adds to an increasingly impressive portfolio of recent women’s sports campaigns.
It is one of the more imaginative and empowering shirt-led soccer campaign’s we’ve seen in recent months.
Another innovative, albeit extremely different in terms of approach, use of the back of football shirts from the first half of 2017 came in the fourth tier of Brazilian football when Fluminense de Feira replaced player numbers with local supermarket price promotions (see case study).