2 mins

How Jürgen Klopp makes fans smile


Yesterday I saw this letter Liverpool manager, Jürgen Klopp, wrote to a young schoolboy dealing with anxiety.

It’s remarkably thoughtful. But it didn’t surprise me. Klopp's been making people smile ever since he became a manager.

Jürgen Klopp letter to schoolboy with anxiety

Back in 2014 he was managing Borussia Dortmund, one of the best teams' in Germany. They were having a spectacularly awful season, sitting at the bottom of the Bundesliga.

As a thank you to the fans, for sticking with the team, Klopp ordered players to serve behind the bar and pull pints at the Christmas Party.

Jürgen Klopp Dortmund Christmas party pints for fans

In Englandit's no different. He’s the only Premier League manager who does interviews with fan-run YouTube channels.

Pre-lockdown he'd drop in on fan events and enjoy a beer with supporters. During lockdown, he did Zoom calls with fans who were self-isolating.

After winning the league he wrote an open letter in the Liverpool Echo paying respect to the fans.

To mark the end of his first season he challenged lifelong supporters to an impromptu bowls game.

Jürgen Klopp making people smile

I'm telling you about Klopp to make a simple point.

If you find even the smallest way to make people smile, they’ll remember you more for that smile than for any business-model stuff.

A brand isn’t a logo or a website. It’s the sum of all the little things.

When Klopp left Dortmund in 2015 they'd just had their worst season in seven years. Most teams' fans would be booing. The whole stadium was in tears.

PS: That smiling line is from a Derek Sivers blog.


Thanks for reading. If you'd enjoyed the story, I'd appreciate if you joined the email list. I share a new case study, like this one, each week.

— Harry

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