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30 Digital Champions: David Lloyd’s journey from tennis pro to content startup creator

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With the unveiling of our Microsoft 30 Digital Champions coming along nicely, we delve into the content sector to see how the use of technology has enabled Media Legends Group to streamline its processes.

(1) Please give us a brief introduction to the business?

Media Legends Group (MLG) is a sports content creator, conducting interviews with celebrated sport personalities in order to provide sports enthusiasts with unrivalled sports stars access through interviews and behind-the-scenes content.

MLG aims to connect with a vast audience of sports fans by giving consumers a peek into the world of sports in a whole new way, having traditional, digital and social bases covered and considered throughout the creative and delivery process.

Ambassadors include former England boss Terry Venables and ex-Manchester United striker Louis Saha.

(2) What have the significant growth milestones been in the last few years?

Having recently launched, our most significant growth milestone to date was signing a deal with Yahoo! Sports for them to broadcast our first sports interview series. With Yahoo! Sport being one of the main sports broadcasters globally, we couldn’t have asked for a better start.

We’re also in talks with broadcast outlets, both in Europe and in the US, which will hopefully come through at the beginning of 2016.

(3) What inspires you as an entrepreneur/business owner, and how does that come across with your company?

We are inspired by creating something different, a concept that’s easy to grasp yet is different to what we’ve seen to date. In this case, we want to bring quality sports interviews to the public – providing fans with a real insight into the industry.

By always striving to be at the forefront of things and demanding the best from ourselves with what we deliver, we make sure to take that extra little time to get things right whilst listening and acting upon feedback, which really drives us on.

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(4) What kind of obstacles are you encountering as you grow your enterprise?

As with most small businesses, finding the “right” people to work with can prove to be a challenge. At MLG, we’ve got a small core team meaning that we all wear plenty of different hats depending on what’s on the agenda for that day; finding people that are willing to walk that extra special mile and take one for the team has proven quite difficult to find. Also, when you’re a small team, it’s even more important that you’re surrounded with likeminded people that are genuine team players.

(5) For a company that isn’t technology based, how has a digital approach helped you to carve out a bigger market and acquire a bigger audience?

Traditionally, anything media/news related was either read in newspapers and magazines or watched on telly. However, thanks to the internet and the number of new media outlets that that has brought us, whilst also making it easier and cheaper for our audiences to access the material available, this has really allowed us to push the boundaries and expand much quicker than what would have been possible just ten years ago.

Also, with the vast number of people catching up on news and watching/streaming programmes on their phones, tablets and computers, I really believe we’re in a great position to scale fast – globally.

(6) How is technology helping you to overcome hurdles, and what are the challenges of implementation?

When launching a media company, one of the main hurdles can actually be that there’s too much tech available. As we’ve learnt along the way, it’s all about keeping it simple; with all the amazing gadgets and programs available for this industry, it’s very easy to over complicate matters and blow the budget.

Also, needless to say, advances in tech also allow us to plan our social media content meaning that we don’t have to allocate time for this each and every day, which could quickly become a time consuming exercise.

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(7) Do you employ any kind of flexible working, and how does technology fit into this?

As much as possible although for those on the film and production team, their hours and timetable are mainly dictated by interviews and shoots. For anyone office based, we apply a flexible approach where remote working is welcomed – as long as the work is being executed to the same standards within the same timeframe.

Thanks to emails and other online communications tools, we’re happy to be more accommodating to our staff’s needs.

(8) What kind of technology tools can you not work without?

The studio where we record most podcasts and interviews is all about high-tech products and gadgets and we simply couldn’t do what we do without these. From microphones to bespoke programs that are used to record the interviews to different kind of sound equipment, we’ve got it all. We’re also using an analytics program to measure the success and popularity of each show/programme that goes live. End of the day: “if it’s not worth measuring, it’s not worth doing.”

(9) What kind of technology would help you better compete with larger rivals?

Some of the great technology used by the big players aren’t feasible for us simply because it’s too expensive. Instead, we stick to what we know and trust and that produce tangible and trackable results. Also, being a smaller player means that we actually don’t require the same in-depth programmes as we’re just fine relying upon the slightly simpler version of things.

Having said that, as the business grows and we’re expanding internationally, we will have to start exploring more, and new, technology solution to make sure we stay at the forefront of things.

(10) Where do you want to take your business in the future?

As we continue to grow in the UK, because of the nature of the business and with sports being such a massive global industry, we’re also looking at other markets, initially in Europe and the US.

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