30 October 2006

Sick as a parrot…

In the old days tech PR was a simple affair, such as simply demystifying the complexities of uninterrupted power supplies or explaining the benefits of fibre over category 5 copper.

But these days it’s everywhere and covers everything. Even the Luddite world of football has caught on. While over-paid work-shy 20-somethings pack their broadband connections with gambling sites and porn, managers crunch their laptops with specialist analysis software such as ProZone, the high profile programme that England manager Steve McClaren favours.

ProZone has been happily gaining plenty of coverage in the sports pages over the past couple of years. This is presumably attributable to it being a good quality product that has an impressive market share. It certainly isn’t because it has a good website, and tracking down its PR company is harder than a Robbie Savage tackle. If fact it’s even harder than liking Robbie Savage.

So congratulations to Football Manager 2007’s PR folk who used good old smoke and mirrors to convince The Times to use “a computer simulation” to assess Alan Pardew’s best West Ham side for beating Blackburn. Football Manager 2007 is a football simulation game that costs around £35. Which at a guess is rather less than ProZone costs.

More to the point, within the virtual world of Football Manager 2005, I’ve won the triple (the one that includes the Champions League as opposed to the Carling Cup) with Burton Albion in just six seasons. In short, it’s about as accurate as Emile Heskey on a bad day.

With grown-up software like ProZone on the bench, back-bedroom saddo software Football Manager 2007 came up with the most formidable West Ham team it could. In the real world, West Ham beat Blackburn convincingly with a very different line-up including a defender making his debut and a 40 year old striker. Guess Alan Pardew is more of a ProZone man.

To any Americans that are still with us:
a) Well done for sticking it out this far but, let’s face it, it’s not the first time you’ve spent this long on something you don’t understand
b) This is football, the world game, as opposed to something that fat men trussed up in pillows do
c) We don’t think Benny Hill is funny


Anonymous said...

"fibre over Cat5 copper" uh..???

Anonymous said...

The is another product on the market that many football teams (and other sports for that matter) are using in a bid to gain competitive advantage over others. Sportscode is a revolutionary video coaching tool that analyses any combination of play, by player or type of play – even while the game is still being played http://www.sportstecinternational.com/Default.aspx?ContentPageName=Products%20Sportscode. Bolton Wanderers for example use this on the sidelines during a game. Not very relevant for the PR blog, but touched on an interesting subject.....

Anonymous said...

Good work to them! Last time I checked, Cairns + Associates were doing the PR for Football Manager. Looks like they have been spending their time on campaigns rather than updating their website though (http://www.cairnsassociates.co.uk/)

Anonymous said...

They should use Championship Manager. It is highly realistic - once I got Sheff Weds into the Premiership (sign young Spanish stikers to dominate the lower leagues!) it got relegated very quickly. Mind you, I didn't get sacked, so it hasn't got the board right.