UCFB Wembley student Jonathan Gilder has spent the summer so far working with National League South side Weston-super-Mare AFC. Working remotely as a data analyst, his work over the coming weeks and months will give the club a greater understanding of what its fans want to read and hear about. Here, the BA (Hons) Football Business & Marketing student tells us what he’s been up to…

During my summer placement at Weston-super-Mare AFC I have been working as a data analyst, which involves looking at social media and website data on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

Areas that I look at include how many users are reached by posts and what the engagement rate of these posts are. From this data, I am then able to make recommendations based on what is working well and what isn’t. This is a vital role for any club as it gives concrete evidence of the content that fans enjoy, however, not many lower league clubs do this. My role is essentially the driving force behind what the marketing team create and put out to fans.

Furthermore, I conduct market research in a numbers of areas to help provide an overall picture of the digital environment, particularly with regards to our main competitors. Tasks that I have carried out include looking at the social media accounts of all the teams competing in our league in order to assess how well we compare to them, and also to see if there is anything else the marketing team can be doing.

As we move into a new season, numbers will begin to rise and so there will be a lot more data to get stuck into. My work is completed remotely and so I am able to continue with this role even when I move back to Wembley in September. Without UCFB, I doubt an opportunity like this would have ever arisen and this experience is vital for me as a young professional entering the sports industry. This will not only look fantastic on my CV but is also helping me to build skills in a variety of areas that can be carried forward into future roles.

Read more about UCFB’s partnership with The National League.