Technology Is Taking the Sports Fan Experience to a Whole New Level

There is no denying the fact that technology is changing the way fans engage with their teams. On-demand entertainment is pushing advertisers and media companies to look for new ways on how to capitalize on this fragmented digital landscape. TV viewership is slowly fading as fans are now accessing all sorts of streaming packages online.

There is no denying the fact that technology is changing the way fans engage with their teams. On-demand entertainment is pushing advertisers and media companies to look for new ways on how to capitalize on this fragmented digital landscape. TV viewership is slowly fading as fans are now accessing all sorts of streaming packages online.

These digital options allow fans to not only watch a sporting event but to also be more engaged through the medium. In today’s world, fans have a multitude of options available to them. They can watch high-definition highlights; have access to play-by-play predictions, behind-the-scenes content, AR/VR interactions and games, up-to-date events, and much more – all from the comfort of their own homes.

The Digital Fan

This high-degree of convenience and increased level of engagement offers sports leagues and individual teams a set of unique opportunities that weren’t there before. With digital platforms such as the Fanisko Engage, sports fans have access to all of that fragmented content instantaneously and from the same source. They can keep themselves updated on what their teams are doing 24/7, becoming more engaged and connected as a result. Sports teams can now understand the wants and needs of their fans by making use of digital analytics provided by these platforms so as to enhance the fan experience and not actually distract from it.

The NBA is a living testament to the benefits of what digital fan engagement can bring. It makes clever use of what today’s technology has to offer in order to make its fans more engaged and more actively involved in sharing their enthusiasm with others. In an interview, Courtney Brunious, the associate director of the USC Sports Institute, said that “[The] NBA has been one of the most forward-looking leagues in terms of technology, in terms of being on top of new innovations in tech. As a whole, I would say the NBA is probably the most tech-savvy amongst the leagues.”

From Screen to the Ballgame

This high level of digitization, quality, and convenience has also pushed for more engagement in the stadiums. High-speed internet is available in many stadiums around the country, allowing fans to check instant replays, order food, drinks and merchandise to be brought to their seats, and even look for the shortest line to the bathroom.

Fans are now looking for both convenience and diversity in the way they connect with their teams. The future of sports lies in this interconnectivity that brings together teams, venues, and fans like never before. Understanding how technology is evolving and how it can be implemented into the industry is instrumental for the success of every league or the individual team. It doesn’t really matter how big they are, or how large the venue is as long as their fan base is constantly growing. And the only safe way to do that is to keep up with technology and what trends are there, ready to enhance the fan experience.

About Fanisko:

Fanisko (www.fanisko.com) offers a one-stop fan engagement platform, Fanisko|Engage, that helps sports and entertainment brands increase mobile fan retention, digital engagement and revenue opportunities. Today’s fans want more from their leagues and teams. We help leagues and teams embrace today’s “SmartFan” demand while maximizing fan potential for sponsors. Our mobile first, one-stop platform targeting millennials with a combination of unique content strategy, product offering including gaming, predictive and behavioral analytics and AR/VR technologies will target and engage the right audience.

So, if you are any sports association, league or a club planning to deliver an amazing mobile based fan engagement platform to build your fanbase, we would like to hear from you.

Keeping up with the Millennial and Gen-Z Tech-Savvy Sports Fan

The world is changing, and it’s changing so fast that many businesses, big and small, can hardly keep up. The same thing can be said about sports leagues and teams who are finding it increasingly hard to engage with their fans in today’s times.

The world is changing, and it’s changing so fast that many businesses, big and small, can hardly keep up. The same thing can be said about sports leagues and teams who are finding it increasingly hard to engage with their fans in today’s times.

It was not that long ago when broadcast and cable television dominated sports viewership. This made it somewhat easy for sports leagues to track their fans’ likes, dislikes, habits, and preferences since TV acted as a sort of “funnel” where most supporters gathered to consume their product. But those days are fast disappearing and TV’s monopoly on entertainment is now over.

Statistics show that traditional TV viewership is in decline among all demographics below the age of 49. Teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17 are showing the greatest decrease, with their viewership dropping by a whopping 11% year after year. Sports also seems to take an extra hit as people between the ages of 18 to 24 show the least interest in it among all other entertainment shows.

From TV to Social Media

Despite these facts, there is still some hope. While traditional TV viewership may be declining, digital usage is on the rise. What’s more, 86% of Americans still consider themselves sports fans. Even more hopeful is the fact that the majority of these fans, especially those between the ages of 15 and 36, are willing to pay for quality sports content.

Among millennials, the most commonly used outlets from where they get their sports content are Facebook and YouTube, and a total of 92% of sports fans between the ages of 18 and 24 use social media as their main source for sports information.

What really draws millennials and the so-called Generation Z (those born after 2000) to these digital outlets is the convenience of having access to all sorts of highlights, bloopers, or behind-the-scenes perspectives that keep the entertainment going long after the game is over.

Enter Fanisko Engage

Sports teams have tried to get ahead of the game here by creating their own digital apps in an attempt at keeping their fans entertained. But while fans are consistently engaged with their teams, they are doing it in all sorts of digital places except within the team’s app.

What Fanisko Engage does here is to bring both the benefits of social media and traditional TV viewing into one platform. Fans no longer need to change from Facebook to YouTube to Instagram to Twitter and then back again since all they need is within this one-stop engagement platform. It also offers live play-by-play predictions, AR/VR games, engagement rewards, and personalized content to keep the fanbase “under the same roof.”

Fans are sure to respond to this sort of diversity as well as the convenience of having everything they need on one single platform. It increases their engagement time, it keeps them on the team’s page for longer, and because of the integrated analytics system, it helps the marketing department better understand their wants and needs for a better overall experience.

Fanisko offers a one-stop fan engagement platform, Fanisko|Engage, that helps sports and entertainment brands increase mobile fan retention, digital engagement and revenue opportunities. Today’s fans want more from their leagues and teams. We help leagues and teams embrace today’s “SmartFan” demand while maximizing fan potential for sponsors. Our mobile first, one-stop platform targeting millennials with a combination of unique content strategy, product offering including gaming, predictive and behavioral analytics and AR/VR technologies will target and engage the right audience.

An Inside Look at Manchester United’s Staggering Revenue Through Fan Engagement

With a breathtaking number of 659 million supporters, it is safe to say that the fanbase of EPL giant Manchester United (https://www.manutd.com/) is nothing short of colossal. Let me explain you the significance of this number – this is twice the population of the United States of America and almost half the population of China. Constituting to 8% of the world population, the fan base of  Premier league’s most successful could hold its own ground to become the fourth largest practiced religion after Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism.

With a breathtaking number of 659 million supporters, it is safe to say that the fanbase of EPL giant Manchester United (https://www.manutd.com/) is nothing short of colossal. Let me explain you the significance of this number – this is twice the population of the United States of America and almost half the population of China. Constituting to 8% of the world population, the fan base of  Premier league’s most successful could hold its own ground to become the fourth largest practiced religion after Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism.

The club is engaged in fan interaction with over 100 million followers digitally, with over 70 million followers on Facebook, 20 million on Instagram and 17 million on Twitter. Furthermore, they have over a million subscribers to their official app and close to 175,000 subscribers to their MUTV app and digital cable channel which is available to 165 countries.

Revenue Through Fan Engagement

It’s one thing to create a massive fan base but it’s a whole different game to metamorphose it into an effective revenue model and that’s exactly what Manchester United have been successful at. The revenue generated through fan engagement has contributed effectively helping the club to post a record-breaking overall revenue of  £581 million ($817 million) last year. Manchester United converts only 1% of its 659 million fans to MUTV subscription at an average of just £1 per month (the pricing will vary by country, taking fans’ respective purchasing power into account and is as low as around £1.60 per month in India to around £6.30 per month in Finland). This helps the club to generate nearly £80 million ($102 million)  per year in additional revenues apart from their primary revenue via broadcasting rights, brand endorsements, and sponsorships.

Now let’s see how this £80 million transcends on to the pitch. This money can fund the signing of as many as two to three top players with five-year contracts or could contribute to one-third of the club’s overall annual wage budget of the entire squad which, is around £232 million ($256 million). That’s in addition to the usual business Manchester United conducts during the transfer windows, which tends to be quite substantial already.Moving on to the most amusing factor about their fanbase is that close to 85% live in developing economies around the world, with more than half in Asia and only close to 7% of the fanbase turns up to their stadium through the course of their soccer season. This makes the club to keep fans engaged between matches through social media and their dedicated apps. The fans are provided with the right and robust content including gamification and mixed reality at the right time in as many as 27 languages, through various mediums. This creates more interaction, greater advertising and merchandising opportunities among its predominantly young fanbase.

In summary, Manchester United’s staggering revenue generated through fan engagement include the following:

  • Robust content
  • Gamification
  • Mixed Reality
  • Fan loyalty
  • Sponsorships
  • MUTV subscription

About Fanisko:

Fanisko (www.fanisko.com) offers a one-stop fan engagement platform, Fanisko|Engage, that helps sports and entertainment brands increase mobile fan retention, digital engagement and revenue opportunities. Today’s fans want more from their leagues and teams. We help leagues and teams embrace today’s “SmartFan” demand while maximizing fan potential for sponsors. Our mobile first, one-stop platform targeting millennials with a combination of unique content strategy, product offering including gaming, predictive and behavioral analytics and AR/VR technologies will target and engage the right audience.

So, if you are any sports association, league or a club planning to deliver an amazing mobile based fan engagement platform to build your fanbase, we would like to hear from you.

*Revenue and fan base statistics were taken from BBC, Independent, MUFC’s social media accounts, and official website respectively*

 

 

 

Focus on Your Superfans

Superfans in sport are not as rare a sight as you may think. There’s always that one guy leading the chants, going to every game or being the life of the party in the stands.

Superfans in sport are not as rare a sight as you may think. There’s always that one guy leading the chants, going to every game or being the life of the party in the stands. Do the teams benefit from their presence and activity?

The short answer is yes, although being a distinctive superfan can sometimes even bring trouble to those dedicated individuals. However, the benefits greatly outweigh the risks. If you want to learn why you should focus on your superfans and how to do it, we have some insight, as well as stories about the most famous superfans in the world.

Identifying Your Superfans

Not all teams have superfans like the New York Jets’ Fireman Ed or the Chicago Cubs’ superfan Ronnie Woo-Woo. While some superfans will be boisterous and impossible to miss, there are types of fans who buy their season tickets and don’t miss any matches, but might otherwise keep a lower profile. Even if no fans are sporting special accessories and leading the chants on your team’s games, that doesn’t mean you don’t have superfans.

For example, have a look at your social media — there are indeed fans who engage with your content, who always comment and facilitate discussion. People who regularly attend games are also easy to identify. They are your superfans, and rewarding them for their loyalty can be rewarding for your team, too.

Offering a Loyalty Program

Your fans aren’t supporting your team for the rewards it might bring, but it’s certainly a good incentive and a friendly approach to nurture loyalty. One way of doing that is through loyalty programs. If you can make it into a win-win situation — providing increased revenue for the team while making your superfans feel appreciated — then it can be one of the best things you can do for your team’s future.

Make sure that your loyalty program operates on a system that’s fair to all fans while giving the most significant rewards to those who are most loyal. Purchasing season tickets is always an excellent parameter to go by, but there are other things you might reward and even stimulate. For example, if you want better engagement on social media, all you have to do is figure out what a valuable reward for encouraging that may be.

Combining Loyalty Programs with Great Fan Experience

Ultimately, the most successful loyalty programs rely on more than offering incentives and rewards. When you manage to pair it up with providing the best fan experience out there, then you’ll know you’re on the right path.

Of course, there are different ways of accomplishing that. The most recent rising star and the future of fan experience is the team app. Most fans spend a lot of time on mobile devices, so provide them with an app that delivers the information they crave. Contextual prediction gaming that nurtures their competitiveness, along with trivia that’s entertaining, is one of the most valuable assets of any team.

With Fanisko Engage, you get a way to enhance your existing team app and provide your fans with the most engaging experience. It’s certainly something your superfans will appreciate, and it can help with your efforts to create a valuable loyalty program. For more information on our platform and its features, visit our website.

Reasons Why You Need a Fan Engagement Platform

It’s difficult to lose fans in the sports industry, but you’re certainly not taking advantage of a tremendous growth opportunity if you’re failing to engage your fans.

Even the biggest football clubs in the world must engage their fans via social networks or by organizing fan days. It’s difficult to lose fans in the sports industry, but you’re certainly not taking advantage of a tremendous growth opportunity if you’re failing to engage your fans.

To stay relevant, you have to make an impact in the engagement game as much as you have to do it on the field. Your biggest ally could be an excellent fan engagement platform, so let’s have a look at the reasons why you need one:

Communicating with Fans

Communication with your fans via modern communication channels such as social networks is crucial for engagement. However, social media isn’t the only place where you can engage fans. With a fan engagement platform, you don’t have to worry about maintaining a social media presence for your team on every social network there is. That can be time-consuming and not yield enough return.

You’re in the driver’s seat, so lead the conversation and be innovative. Fan engagement platforms are on the rise, and might soon become the fan-preferred way of communicating with their favorite teams, especially if they let them express their passion for the team.

Keeping the Fans Entertained

As modern technologies are becoming more widespread, fighting for attention gets harder. Everyone can send their message into the internet ether, and consumers can’t pay attention to them all. Even the biggest teams in the most profitable sports can struggle to get people to follow them online.

That’s because no matter how big you are or how many fans you have out there, you still have to make it worth it for the fans to follow you. To do that, create content that fans find interesting, use video, ask for their opinion, and above all, aim to include fans into everything the club does, so they’ll feel like a part of it.

Analyzing the Data to Figure out What Works and What Doesn’t

With a fan engagement platform, everything you do can be measured. You can see how many people engaged with your content – for example, whether they preferred a video announcement or a fan contest. Analytics is the most important thing for determining how successful your engagement strategies are, and whether they need changes. Not every team will be able to utilize the same tips and tricks – what works for an industry giant might not work out so well for a smaller group. That’s why it’s imperative to make informed decisions based on real hard data and not assumptions.

How Fanisko Engage Can Help

With Fanisko Engage, your team gets a fan engagement platform that can answer your needs and stand the test of time. Engaging your fans throughout the year is not an easy task, especially in the off-season, but fan engagement platforms such as Fanisko Engage certainly make them more manageable by offering the options you need to keep interest alive.

For more information, please visit our website to find out exactly how Fanisko Engage can make your fan engagement hopes a reality.