How sports teams are using big data to increase ROI

How sports teams are using big data to increase ROI

How sports teams are using big data to increase ROI
Sports teams and venues worldwide are in a race to create more personalized experiences for fans — both inside and outside stadiums. As more and more fans are choosing the comfort of their couches and high-definition and plasma TVs become bigger and more affordable, the need to wow audiences and bring them back into sporting venues is greater than ever before. Many sports teams are already gating in-venue Wi-Fi, mobile apps and website video content to collect data and really understand their fans so they can better target them with the right content, deals, promotions and videos. The goal is to maximize the entire experience for fans, from ticket purchase to post-game, and keeping fans engaged even on off-days and during off-season.

To grow their fan base and build loyalty, teams are now creating and publishing content 24/7. But creating the right content that fans care about can only happen when teams have a deep understanding of who their fans are and what they care about even outside the stadium. For example, teams could be selling tickets to some games to a mostly young male audience, but targeting older women and children for other games. Teams need to be able to understand and reach all these different audience segments to market more effectively to them.

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But it’s not just about selling tickets during baseball or football season. What about when it’s off-season? How can teams continue to collect audience data and drive ROI during those slower months? Here’s an example of a team that’s already doing it, and doing it well.

The Florida Panthers are a professional ice hockey team based in Sunrise, Florida in the Miami/Fort Lauderdale area. They are members of the National Hockey League(NHL) and play their home games at the BB&T Center. The team is passionate about using data and technology to deepen fan engagement, build loyalty and find new revenue streams.

Umbel’s intelligent platform helps the Panthers unify data from many siloed systems, third-party vendors and social media sites, so they can see who’s buying tickets, attending games and interacting with their content. This enables the Panthers to get a “360-degree fan view,” communicate one-to-one with them, sell thousands of tickets, find sponsorships and match the right experiences with the right fans.

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Like many sports teams, the Panthers have customer data in multiple, siloed systems like TicketMaster, Facebook, Eloqua and other 3rd-party software. In just 3 days, Umbel aggregated all the disparate data into our platform, which now acts like a CRM for their marketing team. In addition to existing data (emails, zip codes, names etc.), their team wanted more granular data on their fans. It’s impossible to collect hundreds of data points per customer with tools like surveys, so they used Umbel’s CRM acquisition tool to build apps and run giveaways in minutes.

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