sbj-300x107Back in September, our VP of Product Strategy, Russell Scibetti had the opportunity to share an editorial with the Sports Business Journal in their “From the Field of Marketing” section, titled “How teams can benefit from direct relationship with fans.” He decided to write the column after having conversations with multiple teams around how they compete with the secondary market.

While we agree that it’s important to be aware of the impact that this marketplace can have on variable and dynamic ticket pricing strategies, he wanted to reinforce a key point of differentiation in that teams needs to think beyond competing on a transactional level and focus on leverage their true competitive advantage, the direct relationship with fans.

Here is a small sample from the article:

The most important asset a team has is the direct relationship with its passionate fans, with extra emphasis on “direct” (it appears eight times in this article for a reason). Teams cannot rely on broadcast channels to handle the relationship building. Ratings can tell teams how many people are watching or listening to games, but one-on-one conversations and interactions tell 100 times more. These are the data points, even more so than ticket prices, that will drive sales and retention. The fan’s favorite player, the time they got to meet him at training camp, when their team won in overtime on her birthday, the look on his child’s face at her first game, that time the team tweeted back to him … the value of this emotional capital that they have direct access to is immeasurable.

The piece goes into much more detail, drawing parallels to price-based competition in other industries, sharing relevant metrics courtesy of Turnkey Intelligence and featuring examples and quotes from executives at the Atlanta Falcons and Oklahoma City Thunder. I hope this can be a helpful reminder in the new year that relationship-driven marketing is the most sustainable strategy against the secondary market — “let them sell tickets while you sell your fans so much more.”

You can click the link below to read the full article.

http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Journal/Issues/2014/09/22/Opinion/From-the-Field-of-Marketing.aspx 

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