Posted by Brittany Dervan
While it may seem like all fun and games, major sports teams are a business organization first and foremost. The North America sports market alone is expected to reach $78.53 billion per year by 2021. That number is based on a compilation of gate revenues, media rights, sponsorships and merchandising.
However, with fan attendance down or stagnant in many areas of the country, sports teams need to make up for the lost revenue. It’s more important now than ever for teams to understand who their fans are and to engage with them on a personal level in order to create a superior fan experience that draws them back to watching games in person. One way to do this and differentiate their franchises is to leverage location intelligence.
Here’s how location intelligence can help sports teams:
By using location intelligence, sports teams can understand fan demographics and patterns of behavior. Knowing these behaviors and understanding what fans like to do beyond the gates allows organizers to tailor messaging inside the venue or online to their personal interests. It also allows teams to identify common patterns of behavior of devices seen at games and use look-alike targeting to reach other devices that share those similar behaviors. These improved marketing efforts ensure that teams are advertising and reaching the right target audience in order to influence ticket sales.
The sports sponsorship market in North America is expected to surpass $17.5 billion this year alone. With that being said, it’s more important than ever that sports teams choose the right brands to align with that relate best to their fans.
Foot traffic analysis can uncover these brands that fans visit on a regular basis. By discovering these brand preferences, teams can then identify the right brand partnerships and sponsors best suited for their events and fans. This is a win for sponsors and fans, as 71% of respondents in a 2016 Forrester study said they would prefer ads that are tailored to their personalized interests and shopping habits.
Foot traffic analysis can also be used for measurement and attribution. By cross-referencing devices that both see an advertisement at a game and then visit that brand’s location, sports teams can prove to sponsors that their advertising dollars within an arena are resulting in fans taking real world actions, resulting in higher prices that can be commanded for such limited advertising space.
Location intelligence can also enable sports teams to uncover attendee trends such as the number of games attended by date, return rates, where fans traveled from, nearby venues, restaurants or stores they go to before or after game, and what other sports teams’ games they attend. Having an understanding of this fan behavior helps organizers optimize operations on game days. For example, organizers can place a beer tent or porta potties in locations that are the most popular spots to tailgate outside the venue or arena. These insights allow organizers to better plan for games and improve logistics and the overall fan experience, making fans want to come back again.
It’s increasingly critical for sports teams to understand fan behaviors in order to create a better fan experience, improve ticket sales and maximize revenue from sponsorship opportunities. Through the incorporation of location intelligence and data into its operations, a sports team can address all of these critical needs, thereby resulting in an improved and more streamlined experience that can be delivered to its fan base.