When it comes to the league tables for digital innovation, why are so many clubs lingering near the relegation zone?
Makemedia’s top 5 tips when considering the digital strategy for your stadium.
This Summer has seen an interesting season of footballing-related activity for Makemedia, including the opening of the new Brighton and Hove Amex Stadium where the delivery of a 3D explorable model helped contribute to the tremendous demand for season tickets, Rob speaking at the Innovation Showcase at the Stadium Business Summit in sunny Barcelona and of course the signing up of new sports venue clients for digital media consultation. Obvious reasons aside, this is a fascinating industry to be in as there is so much potential for monetising growing digital audiences.
In our last blog about football audiences we talked about the changing face of fan interaction, based on seminars and discussion had at Soccerex in Manchester this year. This blog is going to be looking at practical actions clubs could be taking to create champion digital campaigns.
I read an interesting article about how the average annual wage for a Barcelona or Real Madrid player was over $7m. Apparently, John Terry is earning £170,000 per week. I think it might be time to ask for a pay rise.
What this means for your average footy club is a whole lot of outgoing expenditure, not to mention the general running and upkeep of a stadium, the marketing and promotion of your club, a steady supply of Brasso for the upkeep of the silverware cabinet… the list goes on.
Wouldn’t it be nice to invest in some marketing that provided a little payback? A fast but protracted ROI? Something that even saved money!
STEP 1, Start by making more money and saving money through current channels.
How can you improve your eCommerce channels?
How is your digital strategy helping you to save money?
Is there a way your website could be making money for you that you don’t know about?
We’ve worked with many clients to improve their eCommerce channels and to get their websites generating revenues – because a website isn’t just a website, it’s a resource and if it’s not generating revenues you should be thorough in investigating why not and implementing strategies to ensure it does so.
As well as making money, your digital strategy can be a fantastic opportunity to manage and reduce costs. Do you use digital channels to reduce the cost of getting products to market? (fans placing shirt orders on-line realise higher margins than running expensive shopping outlets)
How does your digital system reduce administration time and costs? We’ve been able to show savings through digital investment to all of our clients, all it takes is a little imagination!
STEP 2, Build up a global audience base.
Football is a religion. Most fans pick their club when they are between 7 and 11 and then stick with said club for life. You need to reach those potential fans and convert them to follow you. If you haven’t got a long term digital strategy that engages new fans then you’ll be falling behind the competition with a rocky road ahead. Even the smallest clubs should be aiming to reach beyond their traditional local audience and communicating with their audience using the appropriate channels, i.e. the adoption of social media by the younger generation means your messaging needs to be delivered via that channel if you want to retain and grow your fan base.
STEP 3, Engage and inform. And then engage again. And again. And then some more.
What are you doing that really sets you apart from other clubs?
What innovative activity is getting the press buzzing about you?
What is it that you did that your fans are telling all their mates about?
Your digital campaign shouldn’t just be about informing fans about how to find your stadium – this is a magical opportunity to really connect and increase both ticket and product sales. Building a loyal, engaged fan base means you can be continually communicating with your audience, learning about what they want and provides you a viral network to push campaigns and news across.
STEP 4 – Increase opportunities for sponsors to invest
Innovation isn’t just about creating an engaging campaign for fans. How are you providing new and interesting opportunities for sponsors?
Clubs need to show the value in advertising with them and not the competition. Large audiences certainly help here but how else can you add value? You need to ask yourself:
How does our digital strategy help to convert sponsorship opportunities?
How does my clubs digital content provide new sponsorship opportunities?
Does my digital strategy add value to advertisers by utilising available data?
STEP 5 – Understand your non-match day strategy
We realise the importance of generating revenue on non-match days – through events and hospitality sales, outlet sales and the like. You should be thinking about how your digital strategy is supporting your activity here by increasing lead generation and converting more of those leads.
If you’re interested in finding out more about how Makemedia can help you to increase revenues and audience engagement give our commercial team a call on 0845 017 8777.