Saturday, February 6, 2010

Five things the Lingerie Football League needs to do to establish some credibility

Assuming the Lingerie Football League wants to establish some credibility – and that’s a big “if” – there are some things it should do.
The LFL may want to continue being a novelty, like World Wrestling Entertainment, rather than a sport. It certainly looks that way. But if it wants to seek some legitimacy, there are some steps it can take.

1. Don’t focus so much attention on how sexy and beautiful the women who play it are.

Men have eyes – they can see how fit and gorgeous the women players are. It’s also called the Lingerie Football League, not Women’s Professional Football. You have to be pretty and athletic to play in the LFL.
It didn’t help that the loudspeakers blared Motley Crue’s “Girls, Girls, Girls” during the media event before the LFL playoffs, according to the Sun Sentinel. That’s reinforcing the notion that the game is more burlesque than pro sport.

2. Game announcers and other league officials should quit making statements about how well these women play football.

Let the video and photos speak for themselves. Yes, they hit hard; tackle hard; throw perfect spiral passes, etc. Quit sounding defensive about the sport.

3. Switch from pay-per-view to cable television.

With all the attention given to the sexy women in the LFL, pay-per-view just adds to the perception that this is some sort of sex show. Use your pay-per-view revenue as a baseline to negotiate a TV contract with one of the men’s channels such as Spike or G4. That should help broaden the audience and hopefully increase attendance at the games.

4. Get more bloggers interested in covering the sport.

Mainstream media, for a host of reasons, likely won’t cover the LFL. But bloggers can create buzz and build an audience for the sport.
Cultivate a group of key bloggers who will write about the LFL’s best players, do pre-game and post-game coverage and write about news concerning the league itself. (That includes negative coverage, such as this report from The Smoking Gun website.)
Also, LFL video shorts should be embeddable, so they can be shared on blogs.

Improve the quality of news and content on your website.

The current LFL website doesn’t have enough information about the games themselves. For example, the news section only has headlines, no stories, for this week’s playoff games. That’s not going to cut it. Fans want a post-game wrap-up and photos.
Also, the first LFL player awards were held Friday night, but the website didn’t post information about the awards until late Saturday.
It doesn’t help that the Lingerie Bowl this year is being played before a live audience on Saturday, but only available online pay-per-view on Sunday. Thanks to the web, anybody interested in the game will already know the outcome.

Photo: Lingerie Football League Most Valuable Player Gabrielle Marie, a running back and linebacker with the Dallas Desire. Photo posted to Twitpic.
Web links:

A Lingerie Bowl preview by Gunaxin, a website devoted to stuff guys like.

The Lingerie Football League game preview on Facebook. Lingerie Bowl VII will feature the Los Angeles Temptation (4-1) vs. the Chicago Bliss (4-0).

Huffington Post published photos of the Los Angeles Temptation.

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