FC St. Pauli: Optimizing Marketing Budget Allocations with Adtriba

FC St. Pauli is a German football club with a long tradition, extremely loyal supporters and committed employees, for whom the "Do It Yourself" approach is a big priority. In this article we show how Adtriba helped the football club to successfully prove this point once again within their marketing strategy. 

We have been talking to marketers about the analogy between football and marketing attribution ever since our founding. Because after all, marketing evaluation via last-click attribution is just like paying only the goal scorers, leaving all the other players empty-handed.

We are all the more pleased that we were able to prove this approach wrong once again during our one-year cooperation with FC St. Pauli and thus helping the Hamburg football club to successfully promote their new, very special team collection for the next season.


However, in addition to advertising in SEO and social media, the marketing mix also includes the club's own newsletters, which at that time already counted several ten thousands of subscribers. 

The marketing managers of the association were right to ask themselves how much influence the newsletter actually had on conversions. Quite reasonably, too: 

The planning of a campaign to promote the new club collection, which was to be a very special one this time, was about to start.

As the first football club in Germany, FC St. Pauli is now producing their collection entirely on their own initiative as part of a campaign called "Do it improve yourself (DIIY)"thus also meeting the demand of its members to continue to pursue the topic of sustainability.

100% performance, 100% sustainable, 100% transparent, 100% self-made

Of course, the fans were to know this - target group-oriented marketing planning was required. 

As a football-enthusiastic Hamburg start-up that also focuses on performance, transparency while following a "do-it-yourself" approach, we were of course more than happy to take on the challenge. 


We started to analyze FC St. Paulis' data using our multi-touch attribution and machine learning algorithm in May 2020. Daily updated customer journey- and performance reports were available to the responsible stakeholders in a transparent and an easy-to-follow format in Adtriba's dashboard or for download, with the possibility to draw direct comparisons with static models. 

With significant results: our data-driven model showed that the football association is indeed successfully operating in the "Do it Yourself" area. Unlike what was assumed by the last-click attribution, the newsletter, which previously hardly received any credits, had a considerable impact on conversions and was not only used by the club's supporters to obtain information. 

With these insights, FC St. Pauli was able to target its advertising campaign and save media budget, that would otherwise have been allocated to the so-called "big players" such as Google and Facebook. This budget could now be used for their own marketing channel to address the already existing, dedicated fan base via the newsletter to announce the new collection. With open rates in the high double digits, this strategy was confirmed. Pre-orders for the home jersey have been possible since December 1st 2020 and are already running very successfully.

The teams' marketing director Martin Drust is also right when he describes FC St. Pauli as "a club of getting things done" in an interview on their homepage:

"That is the whole spirit of this club and we try to maintain this attitude in our marketing as well (...)."


Marketing evaluation with static models often turns out to be incorrect which might lead to dangerous consequences in the context of budget planning and target group approach. With a data-driven solution and the help of artificial intelligence, this can be avoided.

Learn more: 
Dangers of Static Attribution Models

We are particularly happy that with our insights we were able to help save marketing budget while contributing to the success of this future-oriented debut in German national football.This also applies to our further cooperation, where we will support the team with our future-orientated solutions as well. 

Read more: 
The Future of User Journey Tracking

Regardless of whether cheering in the stadium or sitting on the couch - the home team jersey can already be pre-ordered and the entire DIIY collection will be available from May 2021 - offering something to meet everyones taste. 


Want to learn more? We are happy to chat.