Since we launched The Terrace Club a couple of months ago we have received incredible support on it. Our member base is amazing and we wanted to share the stories of some of the Terrace Club members.
Our next featured member is Michael Milberger. Michael has an incredible job that I imagine many of us would love to have. He's a fan of soccer in the truest sense and he gets to do amazing things within the sport each and everyday. Here is his story.
My name is Michael Milberger and I’m currently the director of video content for Major League Soccer.
What are your responsibilities with this job?
I manage a video team of producers, editors and shooters. Sort of my areas are news, analysis, some features and some entertainment stuff. That’s kind of the bulk of the video content that is produced for MLSsoccer.com and some of our other digital platforms and social platforms. We also have a sponsorship team of video and a features unit. I kind of overlap with those two units that produce content in house and with third party productions.
How long have you been in this role?
I joined MLS in 2012 as part of KickTV when KickTV was launching as part of a joint venture with YouTube, Google and MLS. I started then and then moved over to solely work on the MLS side about a year and a half ago.
In the four years since you have been there, have you seen a shift in the type of content you guys are trying to create? Especially from a video perspective?
I would say that in general there has been a huge shift in terms of digital video and sports and soccer content. When we started KickTV in 2012, there was really nothing like that out there. Outlets creating digital video that focused solely on soccer content didn’t really exist. There wasn’t much out there. MLS Digital was created in 2010 to create more content around the league. Outside the league, the major networks weren’t creating that much content. It’s been really cool to see that explode. All the YouTube channels and all these people who are creating all this content on their own. You really have seen an explosion of digital video content especially in the soccer space. There is all this content that we can create now, where as before it was more sport specific, news around the game, analysis content. Now there are social highlights and personality driven stuff. We have a new series with Calen Carr called “The Movement” that really looks at the game on and off the field. So really bringing the world of soccer culture together with MLS and everything happening in the North American soccer scene.
There was a blank slate where we could try to create stuff. We were also trying to do that in conjunction with growing the fanbase. It’s cool to be at the forefront of that and to create content for a new audience. And for a much younger audience that doesn’t have a preconceived notion of what sports content needs to be. It can be what we want it to be. We’re not beholden to what has come before us.
What is most exciting you in the space over the next six months or so?
I think it’s just really exciting with all the new platforms that are embracing video. Whether it is Facebook, or Instagram, it really just gives us an opportunity to get our content to a bigger audience and for people to experience it in a way that is native to how they consume content. This will continue to happen as content shifts to social platforms as opposed to destinations. It’s a great opportunity to reach people that we haven’t reached before and introduce them to MLS and everything the league has to offer.
What was your first job in soccer?
My first full time job in soccer was at KickTV. I had played soccer all of my life. I played in college. Post school, I wanted to pursue some other things. I ended up really getting the itch to get back in the game. I started a blog with a friend of mine called The Denim Kit. Just to be involved and do something fun around soccer. That sort of whet my appetite to want to do be involved full time. There weren’t many media opportunities around soccer when I was first getting out of college. When I started getting back into it from a professional side, there were more opportunities. When KickTV was first starting, those were all jobs that didn’t exist in soccer before. There are so many more jobs in soccer now than there used to be. Especially on the media side. It’s just really exciting that there are so many more things that you can do.
It’s gotta be a pretty exciting thing to work in a sport that you love at a league that is growing. Do you ever sit back and think about how you get to do really cool stuff in a space that you love?
It happens a lot. It’s easy to get caught up in the day to day and the struggles that come with any job. But to be paid to work in soccer and watch soccer and meet players that I grew up watching is a really special experience and it’s a privilege to be part of the league and to be part of the league at such an exciting time. There are a lot of people that have come before me at the league that helped build something and went through some of the leaner times. It’s such an exciting point where you see the potential and where we are going and its just exciting to be a long for the ride. It’s something I try not to take for granted.
Follow Michael on Twitter