Accedo’s ‘Monetising fan engagement in the digital era‘ whitepaper explores the concept of fan engagement, how digital is changing this experience, the journey from follower to payer and the various means of monetising fan engagement, before highlighting case studies across various sports. It goes on to illustrate how the shifting media landscape is impacting this experience, the role of data and the athlete’s themselves.
While the concept of fan engagement is nothing new, the emergence of digital technologies and the way supporters interact with their mobile devices means that there are now countless ways for sports properties to reap the rewards of building positive, direct relationships with their global fanbases and thus monetising fan engagement.
In doing so, sports properties are accessing richer data sets which not only help them to better understand their fans but can also be relayed to sponsors who are now far more interested in putting their name to a piece of likeable, shareable content rather than a static pitchside billboard.
These advances in technology and connectivity mean that sports fans are better served than ever before, but they are also more demanding.
The modern fan wants snackable content that is available to them around the clock on every device, and if one sports property isn’t able to provide that to them, it’s becoming increasingly likely that there will be another that can. The time has, therefore, come for sports entities to exploit the value of the content assets on which they sit in order to create a fan engagement strategy that is fit for the digital era and that facilitates monetising fan engagement.
Fan engagement is a nebulous term. A catch-all for every type of consumer interaction, it spans everything from watching video content and buying match tickets or merchandise, to liking a social media post or downloading an app.
Yet despite its ambiguity, fan engagement has become one of the top measures by which sports properties, and especially their digital services, are judged. While consumer interaction comes in many forms, it is generally accepted that increased engagement escalates brand value. But in order for value to be derived from engagement, it needs to be monetised through measurable commercial mechanisms that demonstrate return on investment (ROI).
Monetising fan engagement in the digital era addresses the following areas:
- What is meant by the term ‘fan engagement’?
- Converting followers into paying fans
- Means of monetisation
- Meeting fans in the right place, at the right time
- Case Study A – Bayern Munich augmented reality experience
- Case Study B – Manchester United launch trio of entertainment centres in China
- Case Study C – Tampa Bay Rays’ Tropicana Field becomes first US cashless stadium
- Case Study D – Formula E’s FanBoost allows fans to give their favourite driver a power boost
- Fan engagement in a shifting media landscape
- Turning on to digital
- Case Study E – MLS loads new app with highlights, tickets, merchandise and fantasy information
- The role of the athlete
- Engagement means data C
- Concluding thoughts
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