Updated: Dec 23, 2020
Many sports teams are trying to figure out how to replace lost ticket sales revenue during the pandemic as restrictions on fans attending in person continue. On the flip side, budgets are getting tighter and teams are not necessarily able to make significant investments in solutions. That’s ok. There are low cost and even free tools on the market that can get you testing and learning if you are on a budget.
At SportsTech Match, we have researched the market for solutions that empower teams to monetise their fanbase and drive new revenue streams. Here are our five tips to sports teams exploring new direct-to-fan business models.
1. Social Not-Working: Like most sports teams, most of your fans will be consuming your content on social networks. Unfortunately social networks are not the easiest place to monetise fans. However, there are solutions out there that enable you to collect data on your social followers (data the social networks may not be sharing with you), understand their preferences, increase engagement with them and monetise this engagement via sponsorship and targeted offers such as merchandise.
2. Pay-Per-View: Live streaming matches, training or behind-the-scenes content need not be expensive. There are many free or low cost live streaming solutions out there and COVID-19 has increased our tolerance for lower quality production standards. This opens up the opportunity for filming with a mobile phone at low cost. It’s also worth checking out Facebook’s new payments tool for live events (at this stage, you keep 100% of the revenue).
3. Free Revenue Share Tools: There are a small number of free tools out there that enable sports teams to monetise their fanbase while sharing revenue with the solution provider. The risk and reward is shared between the club and the solution provider. This can be a no risk way to test your ability to generate revenue and build a business case to start investing and growing these revenue streams.
4. Loyalty Programmes: Fans crave experiences. The more exclusive, the better. There are an increasing number of fan activation solutions on the market offering “off-the-shelf” loyalty programmes that create incremental value for fans by gamifying their experience via various challenges and rewards.
5. Sponsored Experiences: The pandemic has presented opportunities for savvy teams to offer sponsors innovative ways to tackle the pain points brought by the “new normal” and/or add value to the remote fan experience. Some smart solutions providers have pivoted to cater to a remote fan experience.
Know Your Fans!
Ultimately, there is no substitute for knowing your fans. No serious fan engagement and monetisation strategy can succeed unless you know who your fans are, how they engage with your team, what motivates them to engage etc. For more on this read our review of the market for fan relationship management (FRM) solutions. If you're exploring a new fan monetisation solution then be sure that you ask the provider what data their solution can help you to collect on your fans.
Looking For Solutions To Help You Monetise Your Fanbase?
If you are a sports rights owner looking to find new ways to monetise your fanbase then search our marketplace of fan engagement solutions or submit your requirements here and our team will prepare a matching report with the solutions best equipped to meet your needs.
Are You A Solution That Can Help Sports Teams To Monetise Their Fanbase?
If you are a fan engagement solution that can help sports teams to monetise their fans then contact us so that sports teams can discover you in our marketplace.