How To Leverage Business Sports Marketing: 3-Part Series
By Doug Burson, Sphere Marketer & Analytics (Credited Links and References)
The XXIII Olympic Winter Games will be held for 17 days from 9 to 25 February 2018 in PyeongChang, Gangwon Province, the Republic of Korea pyeongchang2018.com
What is sports marketing in 2018? And “Generation Z.”
It can be surprisingly effective, including businesses small and large.
Stratified Messaging + Target Audience Reach + ROI + Conversion Strategy = Win
“Sport is now the only potential discipline where you can engage very high numbers of people. It still provides one of the few moments that is broadcast live where having a replay doesn’t make sense.
In our 24/7 world, where we’re always plugged in, constantly moving from platform to platform and accessing content on demand…sports at both amateur and professionals levels… retain the power to cohere marketing messages on a global level, uniting audiences through their universal passions.
It’s because of this that the sports market is estimated to be worth $700 Billion annually and is growing more rapidly than global GDP.
Despite a fragmenting media landscape, around half of the world’s population, for example, tuned into the 2016 Rio Olympics via “traditional” TV, according to the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
But with so much change in consumer behaviour, largely driven by rapid technological advances, the way marketers must play this crucial sports marketing game has also changed significantly. As James Kirkham, head of fan media channel Copa90, says, “Sports marketing in 2017-2018 is an exciting mess. An elegant chaos.”
Traditional sponsorship is not dead, but great use of assets that genuinely engage are few and far between
How to win in today’s sports marketing environment. Then it will identify the core challenges that must be addressed to fully exploit these opportunities. It will sum-up with inspiration from two experienced sports marketers, one on the client brand marketer side (Ford) and one giving a rights holder perspective (EFL).
— Sports marketing is shifting to new, different platforms.
— Sports fans are demanding a much more engaging, immersive experience.
— Sports marketing is shifting to be more lifestyle and entertainment orientated.
— Sports marketing culture is becoming more inclusive.
Sports marketing is shifting to new, different platforms
A major driver of change is how consumers, particularly younger viewers, watch sport today. The stereotype of sport spectators has long been groups of friends gathering around the TV set, making an event of watching a fixture at home. But traditional TV viewership is declining, as people increasingly consume TV in new ways, such as streaming on their mobile and other digital devices.
However, the game-changer is the meteoric rise of social broadcasting. Both Twitter and Facebook are pushing their “live” functionality, which is increasingly becoming the first place many fans, especially younger ones, go to witness the action.
Twitter has announced that sport is one of the main sectors it plans to develop on this front, already signing a deal to live stream the NFL. Meanwhile, YouTube Live has struck a deal to live stream the Uefa Champions League finals in partnership with BT Sport.
This illustrates a trend for the future,” says Liam Hopkins, sponsorship account director, Leo Burnett. “Broadcasters will look to modernise their offering, both to remain commercial and adapt to the growing number of typically younger sports fans who watch their sports online.”
So what is so compelling about the social media environment for sports fans? It’s the unpolished authenticity,
“Snapchat, for example, brings with it an authenticity previously unseen”, he says. “It is raw and real and absolutely of the moment, so the perfect contrast to overly stage managed or manicured content as previously existed.
“Broadcasters will look to modernize their offering, both to remain commercial and adapt to the growing number of typically younger sports fans who watch their sports online.”
“For Generation Z, authenticity is the number one demand. Overly elaborate platforms or experiences are unable to match the immediacy of their favourite environments.”
To make their environments even more sticky for sports enthusiasts, experts predict that the next obvious areas for social broadcasters to move into are micropayments to buy tickets and travel discounts to get to games.
As well as social broadcasting, another area that is likely to experience growth in the near future is sports creating their own platforms. This is a particularly attractive option for smaller, more niche sports that don’t get prioritised by the traditional broadcasters.
“This is exactly what British Table Tennis did,” says Steve Martin, global CEO of M&C Saatchi Sports and Entertainment. “Rather than thinking ‘we must get this on Sky or the BBC’, they took it into their own hands and 2.1 million watched their own live stream on Facebook.
“This is where we’ll see exponential change; brands, rights holders and federations building their own audiences.”
That said, some experts stress that traditional TV will remain vital. Like Kantar Media’s Nathalie Nénon-Zimmermann, managing director of sports intelligence, who argues that TV is “still King” in terms of exposure and reach.
Google’s decision to advertise on TV during the Uefa Euro 2016 as testament to this, she says. “This proves even digital native companies rely on the reach and power of TV to spread the word about their services.”
Indeed, agencies report those brands that diverted all their sports marketing budget to digital are, in many cases, reversing that decision and realizing traditional media plays a crucial accompanying awareness role.
Brands that have just focused on digital and social have seen brand scores drop, so there’s a big trend back to using traditional media.
Part 2: Sports Associations and Sales Strategies
Part 3: Analytics and Case History Results
Read more at https://www.campaignlive.com/article/need-know-sports-marketing-2017-beyond/1424873#kCFMscxjFp4WcB5R.99
The Sphere Marketer & Analytics Team will guide your company, marketing and sales players to cost effectively identify sales-building sports identity and long-term sales strategies.