sport

The F&B Fan Experience: 100+ Ideas and Incentives To Improve The Game Day Fan Experience

G’day, 

Please find another one of my latest resources with this one touching on some ideas, trends, strategies, innovations and incentives that teams and stadiums can use to enhance the food and beverage (F&B) fan experience on game day. 

The list provides 100+ tips, tricks, ideas and incentives that will be useful to grassroots and global teams and of which have already proven successful for many stakeholders in this space. 

If you would like a hand understanding any of these concepts or ideas please feel free to touch base and I will be happy to assist you or point you in the right direction for more information.

As always this is about education in the sports business so feel free to download, print and share with your colleagues and please also let me know if you tried something and saw a successful outcome as I would love to hear that and be able to showcase those outcomes for you.

The list ranges from ideas and incentives that are across the spectrum of areas during and before the fan journey starts and range from F&B incentives to the changing diets and tastes of sports fans and even some quirky random ideas in between too.

Remember that it’s always important to look outside the box and get a bit creative when it comes to the food and beverage fan experience.

All the best and touch base if you need anything as I’m always happy to assist.

Please find a downloadable PDF file here: THE F&B FAN EXPERIENCE

100+ Ticketing Tips, Tricks, Ideas and Incentives for Sports Teams and Venues

Hello, 

Please find this latest resource on ticketing useful in helping growing your fan bases and getting more bums on seats.

The list provides 100+ tips, tricks, ideas and incentives that will be useful for grassroots and global teams to offer interesting and innovative ways to acquire and retain fans and win back lapsed ones too. Many of these strategies have already proven successful for many stakeholders across the globe and are not limited just to sport either.

If you would like a hand understanding any of these concepts or ideas please feel free to touch base and I will be happy to assist you or point you in the right direction for more information.

As always this is about education in the sports business so feel free to download, print and share with your colleagues and also please let me know if you tried something and saw a successful outcome as I would love to hear that and I can pass it along to other teams, venues or showcase it to highlight your success.

The list ranges from ideas and incentives that are across the spectrum of areas before, during and after the fan journey starts and range from transport to pets and even some quirky random ideas in between…..remember it’s always important to look outside the box and get a bit creative when it comes to ticketing.

All the best and touch base if you need anything.

A4 PRINT READY DOWNLOAD HERE

100+ Fan Engagement Ideas for Kids, Families, Members and Fans

Good morning, 

Please feel free to use this newly updated version of one of my popular fan engagement resources.

The following infographic provides 100+ ideas and strategies for teams and venues of any size to use to give their fans and members, from young to old, extra bang for their buck on game day.

I hope you find it useful and please feel free to touch base should you need to know what an idea means, how I can be of assistance, put you in touch with a sports business colleague or help you in any way.

I hope just one of the ideas helps you improve your fan’s fan journey and game day experience.

Have a great weekend and all the best in delighting your fans. 

Previous fan engagement resource here:

Fan Engagement Ideas Resource

 

Cricket Australia Test Match Fan Experience at The Gabba, First Test, Australia Vs Sri Lanka, Brisbane, 24 January 2018

I have a fan experience report to follow for Australasian Leisure Management Magazine but for now here are a selection of photos from the first test in Brisbane at The Gabba between Cricket Australia and Sri Lanka.

The Importance and Benefits of Harnessing Fan Generated Content: An NRL 2018 Case Study

If it’s one part of the fan engagement spectrum that I have consistently championed over the years for clubs and my clients it has been to acknowledge, promote, utilise and harness the diverse skill sets of their fans. 

Fans have skills that can help a club in many ways whether it be from graphic design to podcasting and what we’re seeing more and more of is that teams are realising that they can create deeper emotional loyalty, new revenue opportunities and provide extra engaging content to their members and fans by working alongside these fan groups. 

Teams like the MLS Seattle Sounders are one of the best in the business when it comes to harnessing the skills of their fans. Every year they do a ‘Posters By The People‘ and a scarf design contest which allows Sounders fans of all ages and skill levels to contribute match day poster and scarf designs which are then voted on for by fellow fans and either used across the clubs official social media channels or produced for fans to wear on game day respectively.

It’s an incredibly effective and simple way to bring these fans closer to the team, highlight the skills and passions of their fans and overall it’s a positive thing to do. It’s not going to work for every team and it’s certainly never going to take over from the quality output that team staff do but it’s just a great look for a club to illustrate that they’re listening to their fans.

 

One reason for the proliferation of fan generated content has been because the barriers for entry into both graphic design and podcasting for instance have been broken down. You can now create quality designs and effective podcasts as a result of free design platforms like Canva whose intuitive platform enables anyone to get started creating content as well as podcasting’s explosion which has seen every man and his dog set up a podcast with the very basic of equipment. For both graphic design and podcasting the costs are also much lighter on the fans wallet these days as opposed to the past where expensive graphic design software and a recording studio would have stopped many fans from getting started. 

Now obviously the vast majority of fan generated content creators out there are not at the level of professional graphic designers or creating professional studio recorded quality podcasts such as what the league or teams contribute however what it does do is highlight that fans have these skills, that they’re building their own fan groups of fellow supporters of the same team and that their voice and that of fans voices globally are growing louder every day as they realise that they can create content that is highlighting their love for their team.

It’s impressive to see the rise and rise of the fan voice across the globe as they can now create content that other fans enjoy and engage with. Clubs should absolutely start tapping into this more and more as it shows an appreciation of the fans effort and compliments the work that their in house teams do whether that be in writing, podcasting, graphic design or other related fields. 

I recently posted this thread on Twitter highlighting the creative efforts of NRL fan content creators here in Australia after what has been a stellar year for the code with ratings, revenue, memberships, crowds all up as well as the establishment of the NRLW and games in Perth and Denver.

The game’s greatest asset is the fan so it is important to acknowledge these fans as they are constantly pumping out the positive, passionate and engaging content and I feel this illustrates my point that it is both vital and rewarding for clubs to find ways to engage, highlight, promote and harness the diverse range of skills of their fans as it is a win-win positive thing to do.

1. Podcasters

Having worked very closely in the podcasting space in recent times I have seen the rise of people wanting to get their passion into podcasting and as I said above the barriers have now decreased with a very basic bedroom podcasting set up costing well under $100. Podcast quality has also increased so while some pods may not be at a high quality level, whats happening is that fans are getting better the longer they stick with it. There’s also an incredibly strong community amongst these podcasters too. They do it for the love of the game. They promote each other and therefore that of the game and their team. They are broadcasters and should be taken seriously. 

Some of the podcasters out there in the NRL include:

Ladies Who League

Oh Errol

Full Credit To The Boys

The Full 80

Shark Cast

Fifth And Last

Progressive Rugby League

League Life NRL

Roosters Radio

Panthers Weekly

Dead in Goal

NRL Roast

Woody & Slugs Do League

Fire Up On FBI

This Week In League

Sports Best Friends

League Digest

Zero Tackle

NRL Boom Rookies

Fins Up Pod

League Counsel

ASD Podcast

View From The East Stand

2. Statistics/Game Data

Fans like stats guru Andrew Ferguson who runs one of the best league sites out there in Rugby League Project is an incredible fan generated site which houses a massive range of rugby league data and is an absolute credit to the game. I find myself using this site a lot as do other NRL fans. Another fan doing good things with stats is pythagoNRL.

3. Sports Science

In a classic case of a fan using their diverse skills to offer the rest of us an insight into player injuries and recovery, the NRL Physio has provided some really interesting insights and analysis for NRL fans this year. The NRL should find a way to utilise his skills as fans have greatly enjoyed his insights and graphics in real time during games on social as he provides game player injuries and recovery information and analysis. He knows he’s not affiliated with the NRL and that what he says is only his opinion however he has built an incredibly strong trust with fellow fans as a result of his skills and willingness to want to contribute to his passion.

4. Independent Broadcasters

The independent fan NRL media, broadcasters and writers like The 81st Minute, Steele Sport, League Unlimited, Nothing But NRL, Steve Mascord, James Smith, RLeagueLive, JasonNRL and even to an extent ‘The Fan which while it may be shown on Fox Sports is run by mega league fan Andrew Voss who consistently provides outstanding behind the scenes storytelling that fans greatly enjoy. 

5. Fan Club Social Accounts

The NRL fan club accounts across social constantly provide fellow fans with a passionate atmosphere at games as well as insights and analysis throughout the week and add to the stories and content from the club but from their perspective as hardcore fans.

Some of these include: 

NRL Bulldogs Fans

Nothing But Knights

The Greenhouse- Canberra Raiders

Red V Mail- St George-Illawarra Dragons

NZ Warriors Die Hards

The Burrow- Souths

Wests Tigers Hub

Titans Legion- Gold Coast Titans

NQ Stampede- NQ Cowboys

Eels The Cumberland Throw- Parramatta

6. Social Commentators

The often hilarious NRL social commentators who constantly provide cheeky laughs, clever analysis, interesting stats, glorious memories as well as cutting through the media bullshit, crisis merchants and spin that often snakes its way into the game. In fact what we’ve seen this year is that as a result of the positives in the game as well as the huge level of fan generated content and these positive fan voices in NRL that fans have collectively called out the rubbish reporting and negativity in rugby league. 

Some of the accounts to follow on Twitter for instance include:

Boring NRL Guy

Sports Freakshow

Former Legend

Karate Warrior 2

Winfield Cup

NRL Grammar Cop

Simpsons NRL 

7. The Graphic Designers

The graphic designers like  and  as well as others who’ve put their own skills and spin on things to create interesting NRL content like jersey designs and artworks are to be applauded. Perhaps a game day poster idea could be something teams could think about for 2019 and then have these around town prior to a game to promote the match. 

8. The Hardcore Fans

And then there’s fans like who travelled 19259.4kms for 24/24 Parramatta Eels matches this year, documenting his journey along the way for fellow NRL fans to enjoy. What were some of the other great NRL fan stories you enjoyed from 2018?

Overall it’s been a huge positive year for both the NRL and NRL fans and I just wanted to put this together before the start of the NRL finals to shine a light on some of the creative content creators and fans out there who go above and beyond for the game. League’s greatest asset is the fan and the faster clubs around the globe realise the benefits of working closer with these particular fans and their skills, the more the game, fans and the code as a whole will grow together.

Fan Engagement 2016 Year In Review: 100 Global Fan Engagement/Experience Activations

What a year in fan engagement 2016 has been.

From Pokemon Go to Hackathons, eSports to virtual reality and wearables to a focus on user generated content, stadiums and teams across the globe have been putting fans first with some very funny, interesting and innovative ideas. 

Sports fans across global stadiums have been gifted with a dazzling array of interesting and down right intriguing fan engagement activations throughout 2016 particularly through new advances in technology. Teams are constantly on the hunt to find the new ‘wow’ factor idea that brings the fan closer and increases their emotional loyalty to the team while importantly finding ways to drive revenue through these sponsor led engagement ideas. 

As I did last year with this 2015 review, I’ve put together a list of 100 activations across a multitude of areas of engagement and from some 90 odd stadiums and teams. The list I’ve collated is by no means a definitive account of the top 100 fan engagement ideas in 2016 but merely my take on what some of the best activations have been from what I’ve seen on my travels throughout the year. 

I could have easily added another 200 to 300 ideas in highlighting the impressive work that fan engagement and customer experience reps are doing around the world such is the high quality of creativity on show however for now these are the 100 best ideas across fan engagement/experience that spring to mind from the year that was.

There is no particular order here for the 100 ideas but be sure to tell me if I’ve missed something spectacular or if you would like to learn more about an idea seen here.

Be sure to check out some of my resources for more information and education:

5000+ Fan Engagement Pinterest Board

200 Fan Engagement Ideas Work Sheet

Once again, well done to all of the creative people responsible for the work below.

Let’s get started……

100. The Royal Box at the 2016 Formula One Australian Grand Prix. A seat upgrade right on the starting line for the big race.

Royal Box at AUS GP F1

Royal Box at AUS GP F1

99. Green Bay Packers NFL Fan Choice Awards. Fans can vote for their fellow fans in these awards

Green Bay Packers Fan Choice Awards

Green Bay Packers Fan Choice Awards

98. Liverpool let fans take control of Fabio Aurelio’s free kick on Twitter.

97. Seattle Sounders FC continued their great work in fan engagement and user generated content with their Posters By The People

Sounders FC 'Posters By The People'

Sounders FC ‘Posters By The People’

Sounders FC

Sounders FC

96. Sporting Kansas FC produced these cute Valentines Day cards for fans.

Sporting Kansas Valentines Day Cards

Sporting Kansas Valentines Day Cards

95. The San Francisco 49ers let fans sing the national anthem at their Levis Stadium home games with this Golden Voice bit of fun.

49ers Golden Voice

49ers Golden Voice

94. Cambridge United FC gave fans this voucher for free food and drinks at an away game that was very far from home. 

Cambridge United FC

Cambridge United FC

93. Cronulla Sharks in the NRL introduced their #SharkPark3D virtual reality

Cronulla Sharks 360

Cronulla Sharks 360

92. Argentine club Tigre introduced implantable microchips for die hard fans.

Tigre's Fan Microchip's

Tigre’s Fan Microchip’s

91. The Atlanta Hawks unveiled a shark tank like competition for fans to showcase their marketing skills.

Atlanta Hawks 'Shark Tank'

Atlanta Hawks ‘Shark Tank’

90. Brisbane Roar (A-League) and Brisbane Lions (AFL) announced a collaboration to work together this year by allowing members of both clubs to enjoy a top-level cross-code experience.

Brisbane Roar A-League and Brisbane Lions AFL

Brisbane Roar A-League and Brisbane Lions AFL

89. The Phoenix Suns made everyone laugh with their Lion King Cam 88. Hibernian unveiled their ‘Life With Hibs’ campaign.

Hibs SPL

Hibs SPL

87. The Detroit Pistons introduced their new interactive game day guide which saw the emails that they send to fans change every time the fan views them.

Detroit Pistons NBA

Detroit Pistons NBA

86. West Ham United FC were one of a number of clubs to introduce eSports players. Manchester City, Ajax, PSG and the 76ers were among the teams to also introduce eSports players.

West Ham eSports Player

West Ham eSports Player

Ajax eSports

Ajax eSports

85. The Townsville Fire in the WNBL put all of their members names on the centre court.

Townsville Fire WNBL

Townsville Fire WNBL

84. The NBA and Under Armour introduced the NBA Fit App.

NBA Fit App

NBA Fit App

83. FC Grenoble used Tinder to engage their fans with an activation that involved fans matching with the team mascot.

FC Grenoble Rugby Tinder App

FC Grenoble Rugby Tinder App

82. The Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters first pitch got a bit scary as they did this scary Ring version of events in Japan. 81. The NY Knicks and other teams across codes poked fun at fans with the ‘Bandwagon Cam’ throughout the season.

80. Swedish club AIK replaced younger mascots with older ones for this game and it was an interesting outcome.  79. Mercedes Benz Stadium introduced their concession offerings for fans for when the new stadium opens. Fan favourites like hot dogs and soda’s are cheap at $2. The Atlanta Falcons then sent members a player signed thank you card with $2 inside so they could use that money on the new food and drink menu.

Mercedes Benz Stadium concession offerings

Mercedes Benz Stadium concession offerings

Atlanta Falcons NFL

Atlanta Falcons NFL

78. The Melbourne Storm in the NRL lit up Melbourne’s AAMI Park with these stadium projections.

Melbourne Storm NRL

Melbourne Storm NRL

77. The Sacramento Kings in the NBA launched a spin cycle class for fans.

Sacramento Kings NBA

Sacramento Kings NBA

76. Richmond Tigers in the AFL got cosy with the Cuddle Cam 75. Euro 2016 saw David Guetta team up with fans which allowed the latter to sing his song and re-mix the track.

Euro 2016

Euro 2016

74. Metallica played the US national anthem to thousands of fans at a San Jose Sharks NHL home game. Interesting national anthem renditions. Can they work elsewhere?

72. The Sydney Swans in the AFL worked with a sponsor to light up the Sydney Cricket Ground through this wearables activation.

Sydney Swans

Sydney Swans

Sydney Swans/SCG AFL

Sydney Swans/SCG AFL

71. The roving dinosaur at the Australian Grand Prix in their new M-Lane gourmet food and drink area certainly made fans lose their minds for a few seconds.

AUS GP F1 'M-Lane'

AUS GP F1 ‘M-Lane’

70. The Dallas Mavericks in the NBA let fans design the new basketball court.

Dallas Mavericks NBA

Dallas Mavericks NBA

69. At the Wests Tigers home game at Campbelltown Stadium in Sydney against the NZ Warriors made the traditional Kiwi meal, Hangi available to fans.

Hangi at Wests Tigers NRL

Hangi at Wests Tigers NRL

68. The Phoenix Suns held a 90’s night complete with some clever content like this pager number and 90’s website. 

Phoenix Suns NBA

Phoenix Suns NBA

Phoenix Suns 90's Night

Phoenix Suns 90’s Night

67. The Sounders in the MLS let fans design their scarves.

Sounders FC 'Scarf Sound Off'

Sounders FC ‘Scarf Sound Off’

66. Leicester City gave away a free beer to every member after winning the Premier League.

LCFC

LCFC

65. Brisbane Lions AFL club gave free car washes to fans cars while they were at the game.

Brisbane Lions AFL

Brisbane Lions AFL

64. The Australian national football team, The Socceroos created a clever junior passport which saw kids be able to participate in activities and get a stamp at each station and then take home a merchandise pack.

Socceroos Junior Passport

Socceroos Junior Passport

63. Auckland Blues in the Super Rugby gave away 10 tonnes of potatoes to a selection of fans on game day.

Auckland Blues Super Rugby

Auckland Blues Super Rugby

62. The ever inclusive Sydney Swans launched their official LGBTI fan group. Read more about the Rainbow Swans.

Sydney Swans AFL Rainbow Swans

Sydney Swans AFL Rainbow Swans

61. Football club Reading FC in England gave fans the opportunity to brand and name their new beer in partnership with West Berkshire Brewing.

Reading FC

Reading FC

60. Essendon launched their Embracing India campaign to engage with the Indian community in Australia.

AFL Essendon's Embracing India Initiative

AFL Essendon’s Embracing India Initiative

59. Leicester City and Walkers released these special edition crisps called ‘Salt and Victory’ to celebrate their huge win in the Premier League. They gave away a packet to every fan at a home game too.

LCFC 'Salt and Victory' Crisps

LCFC ‘Salt and Victory’ Crisps

58. The NY Rangers introduced a new big screen idea with the ‘Viral Moment Of The Game’ that took a clip that was or is going viral and put it up on the screens during breaks.

NY Islanders NHL 'Viral Moment'

NY Islanders NHL ‘Viral Moment’

57. As part of their fan giveaways and promotions in 2016, the Dodgers gave away 40,000 Justin Turner Chia Pet’s to fans. That’s an interesting merchandise/giveaway idea if ever I’ve seen one.

LA Dodgers MLB

LA Dodgers MLB

56. Arsenal launched the first Premier League app for kids. More on this here.

Arsenal Kids App

Arsenal Kids App

55. The GWS Giants had a half time activation that made one fan $100,000 richer! What a kick this was…. This video shot by a fan is also worth a look. Absolute scenes…..

54. The Atlanta Tinder Hawks Swipe Right Night 2.0 again showcased the Hawks flair for tech with this digital tech night at a game. More about this activation here.

Atlanta Hawks Swipe Right Night 2.0

Atlanta Hawks Swipe Right Night 2.0

53. MCFC have unveiled their plans for their new walk way from the stadium which sees fans see them walk through a special tunnel.

MCFC

MCFC

52. The Sacramento Kings in the NBA held a tech night that was a good way to showcase fans tech skills which would go a long way in improving their fan experience at games.

Sacramento Kings Tech Night

Sacramento Kings Tech Night

51. The Miami Dolphins and a host of other US teams partnered with Uber for Uber Tailgate which saw fans be able to catch a seamless ride to and from the game.

Uber Tailgate

Uber Tailgate

50. The NRL launched a new real time auction feature called Instabilia which allowed fans to bid on game worn gear while the game was still on. 

NRL Instabilia

NRL Instabilia

49. The British and Irish Lions unveiled their new kit with this cool hologram activation.

48. NYCFC introduced ‘Hair Cam’

NYCFC 'Hair Cam'

NYCFC ‘Hair Cam’

47. Collingwood let injured player Dane Swan live tweet a game from the official team Twitter account.

Collingwood AFL

Collingwood AFL

46. The NRL Bulldogs leased their Belmore Sports Ground stadium out to one lucky family for a night.

NRL Bulldogs

NRL Bulldogs

45. At the NRL Grand Final fans were treated to free massages in the members only fan area.

NRL Grand Final

NRL Grand Final

44. The NFL Baltimore Ravens let a fan be a photographer for the night.

Baltimore Ravens NFL

Baltimore Ravens NFL

43. MCFC introduced robots to keep fans happy at Etihad Stadium.

MCFC Robots

MCFC Robots

42. Tottenham Hotspur in the BPL produced a heap of free and fun printable party ideas for fans.

Tottenham EPL

Tottenham EPL

41. Arsenal FC had fun with this ‘Where’s Wally’ type mascot image on social media which took off.

Arsenal FC

Arsenal FC

40. Minor League team, the Potomac Nationals had one of the coolest giveaway promotions ever with this Seinfeld Frank Costanza bobblehead.

Potomac Nationals

Potomac Nationals

39. The Memphis Grizzlies held a cute Diaper Derby. The Sydney Kings in the NBL also did a baby race which went down well with fans.

Memphis Grizzlies 'Diaper Derby'

Memphis Grizzlies ‘Diaper Derby’

38. The Atlanta Falcons called upon gaming fans for Madden Monday tournaments.

Atlanta Falcons NFL

Atlanta Falcons NFL

37. The San Diego Padres held a Ghostbusters Day complete with a nifty bobblehead freebie.

Padres MLB 'Ghostbuster's Day'

Padres MLB ‘Ghostbuster’s Day’

36. The Brisbane Heat in the BBL cricket launched their virtual reality mobile app.

Brisbane Heat BBL

Brisbane Heat BBL

35. The Western Sydney Wanderers launched a new fan bar for their A-League fans.

WSW A-League

WSW A-League

34. West Ham United FC launched a new range of beers at the Olympic Stadium in London which included Iron Ale and Boleyn Bitter.

West Ham United FC

West Ham United FC

33. The Cleveland Cavaliers introduced a VR headset activation with sponsor Budweiser to bring exclusive VR content directly to fans through their app.

Cavs NBA VR

Cavs NBA VR

Cavs NBA VR

Cavs NBA VR

32. The NBA launched these colourful Twitter emojis and hashflags for the current NBA season.

NBA Twitter Emoji's

NBA Twitter Emoji’s

NBA Hashflags

NBA Hashflags

31. Cricket Australia launched their ‘Field of Flavours’ fan experience that is seen here on show for the third test match at the Adelaide Oval.

Cricket Australia 'Field of Flavours'

Cricket Australia ‘Field of Flavours’

Cricket Australia 'Field of Flavours'

Cricket Australia ‘Field of Flavours’

30. The WWE Series let fans take home their actual seats!

WWE Survivor Series

WWE Survivor Series

WWE Survivor Series

WWE Survivor Series

30. The Canberra Raiders fans in the NRL made the ‘Viking Clap’ something to remember in 2016.

29. The Seattle Mariners gave away 20,000 replica plaques to fans.

Seattle Mariners MLB

Seattle Mariners MLB

28. Aston Villa’s owner Tony Xia allowed members the opportunity to sit with him at games in his director’s box.

Aston Villa FC

Aston Villa FC

27. QPRFC held a special ticket promotion to coincide with the 50th anniversary of their 1967 league cup win by offering tickets at this low price.

QPRFC

QPRFC

27. Melbourne Victory in the A-League gave away free personalised trading cards to fans.

Melbourne Victory A-League personalised trading cards

Melbourne Victory A-League personalised trading cards

26. The Cleveland Cavaliers gave fans the chance to wear a championship ring through virtual reality.

Cavs NBA

Cavs NBA

25. The NRL Grand Final featured a cool activation called ‘The Virtual Boot’ where fans could take a virtual kick as seen below. e7b494d70612bb8e6f3fca0fb58b5aff

24. Football club Morton FC called on fans to design and then judge the winning kit design for their away jersey.

Morton FC

Morton FC

23. Watford and Virgin Rail subsidised the away day train travel for fans.

Watford EPL

Watford EPL

22. NASCAR let their drivers take over the Snapchat account.

NASCAR

NASCAR

21. West Bromwich Albion owner gave out a free beer and scarf to every member at one of the team’s home games.

West Bromwich Albion BPL

West Bromwich Albion BPL

20. Chelsea Football Club stood out brightly with this new lighting and visuals display this season.

Chelsea FC

Chelsea FC

19. Memphis Grizzlies created a giant corn maze for fans. 

Memphis Grizzlies NBA

Memphis Grizzlies NBA

18. MCFC launched Pep’s Taxi. 

17. Australian Open Tennis Instagram Mosaic. Fans were encouraged to tag #AUSOPEN on Instagram and then were able to get their polaroid pic printed. They could then add it to the wall as seen below.

Aus Open Instagram Mosaic

Aus Open Instagram Mosaic

Aus Open Instagram Mosaic

Aus Open Instagram Mosaic

16. The Canterbury Bulldogs in the NRL had a fantastic fan engagement project called The Breed. Everyone should check this out.

NRL Bulldogs

NRL Bulldogs

'The Breed' Canterbury Bulldogs NRL

‘The Breed’ Canterbury Bulldogs NRL

15. The Minnesota Wild became the first team to use Snapchat Spectacles. 

14. The Gold Coast Suns (AFL) were one of a number of global teams who jumped on the Pokemon Go craze back in June with this event.

Gold Coast Suns AFL

Gold Coast Suns AFL

13. Plenty of teams in the US and UK started to engage fans with hackathons. Denver Broncos, MCFC and Oregon University were just some of the many teams getting into this tech space.

MCFC

MCFC

Oregon University Quackcon

Oregon University Quackcon

Denver Broncos NFL

Denver Broncos NFL

12. Westpac Stadium projections for the ALL BLACKS rugby union test matches in Wellington, New Zealand.

Westpac Stadium Wellington, NZ

Westpac Stadium Wellington, NZ

11. The Hallmark Security Football League produced this great little ground hopper book for young and old football fans.

The Hallmark Security Football League

The Hallmark Security Football League

10. The AFL Grand Final saw fans take a big kick off the ‘Tower of Torp’ and into a giant AFL Premiership cup.

AFL Grand Final 'Tower of Torp'

AFL Grand Final ‘Tower of Torp’

9. The Western Bulldogs in the AFL gave fans travelling to Sydney for a finals match $10 and this lovely letter to show them how much their support meant to them in the run through the finals.

Western Bulldogs AFL

Western Bulldogs AFL

8. The Denver Broncos launched a 45 day fitness challenge for fans which represented a good health and fitness bit of fan engagement.

Denver Broncos NFL

Denver Broncos NFL

7. The Houston Astros gave out beards for fans of Keuchel.

Houston Astros

Houston Astros

6. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFL got their players to draw NFL team logos. What ensued was pretty hilarious. Bucs Draw NFL Logos

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 'Draw Logos'

Tampa Bay Buccaneers ‘Draw Logos’

5. The pool deck and Sandy Point at The Gabba, Brisbane. 

Pool Deck and Sandy Point at The Gabba Cricket Australia

Pool Deck and Sandy Point at The Gabba Cricket Australia

Gabba Pool Deck

Gabba Pool Deck

Sandy Point

Sandy Point

Sandy Point

Sandy Point

Sandy Point

Sandy Point

Gabba Pool Deck

Gabba Pool Deck

4. Tennessee Titans NFL fan caricatures had fans lining up for these free face drawings when I visited Nissan Stadium in October.

Titans caricature's

Titans caricature’s

3.  Allianz Stadium in Sydney put up an offer for fans to grab a free pie via their app if either team scored 4 tries or more before the 60th minute. 

Allianz Stadium

Allianz Stadium

 2. San Antonio Spurs gave away packets of Slam Duncan O’s (Tim Duncan’s cereal) via mini parachutes at his farewell ceremony

1. One of the best bits of fan engagement at the AFL Grand Final was seeing a couple of fans race around the MCG fence as they tried to beat a horse on the LED screen which was racing along side them.

100+ Fan Engagement and Fan Experience Articles From October 2016

Here’s a quick round up of 100+ interesting fan engagement and fan experience reads from the sports business world from the month of October 2016.

  1. Cleveland Cavaliers, Nike Give Fans Virtual NBA Championship Ring-Wearing Experience
  2. Paris Saint-Germain Launches Stadium App For Optimal Fan Experience
  3. 5 Ideas & Tactics for Using Data to Increase Fan Engagement
  4. Scalped: How Technology Is Impacting The Ticket Industry And The Overall Fan Experience
  5. Uber Partners With 16 NBA Franchises For 2016-17 Season
  6. The Future Of Sports App Tech
  7. SMART STADIUMS LEADING THE WAY IN BOOSTING FAN EXPERIENCE
  8. Want more from your Ohio State football experience? Now you can buy an upgrade
  9. 100 DAYS ‘TIL SUPER BOWL: HOW METRO IS GETTING READY FOR COMPANY
  10. Panasonic and Sacramento Kings Debut NBA’s First 4K Ultra HD Centerhung Video Displays at Season Home Opener
  11. WTA Finals: Tennis fans can enjoy a virtual tennis experience at StarHub booth
  12. NBA gives basketball viewers chance to see games in virtual reality
  13. Sharks Make Changes Off the Ice
  14. World Series a unique experience for this Cubs fan, front office alum
  15. Ipswich Town’s entertainment factor questioned at supporters’ club’s AGM at Portman Road
  16. Scalped: How Technology Is Impacting The Ticket Industry And The Overall Fan Experience
  17. Column: This is what Cubs fans have been waiting for
  18. UBER AND THE SAN ANTONIO SPURS TEAM UP TO HELP FANS RIDE RESPONSIBLY ON GAME DAYS
  19. Detroit Pistons hammering out 2 key issues for downtown arena move
  20. Modern technology is in danger of leaving the Premier League behind – football must fight back or viewers will keep turning off
  21. BookMyShow-backed Fantain, aims to take stab at sports and entertainment fan engagement market
  22. Apps Are Bringing Fans Closer to the NFL Than Ever Before
  23. Fans can now order drinks from their seats at Gloucester Rugby
  24. 5 Truths: Twickenham perfect venue for NFL, Bayern Munich stars clearly can’t get enough
  25. Fans experience Penn State athletics through virtual reality before Ohio State-Penn State football game
  26. Microsoft identifies huge opportunities in the nation’s sports industry
  27. FamousFan Is Making The Jumbotron Experience More Social For Teams And Fans
  28. MotoGP Races Into Peoples Pockets
  29. Live Fantasy Sport App Ballr and Uber Announce Indonesia Partnership in a New Era of Fan Engagement
  30. Completion of the Mercedes-Benz Stadium to Enhance Atlanta’s Role As a Sports Mecca
  31. Why more teams want stadiums like Atlanta’s SunTrust Park than Chicago’s Wrigley Field
  32. O2 to deliver more personalised mobile experiences for fans with renewal of English Rugby partnership
  33. Yankee Stadium will undergo major design changes to add ‘social gathering spaces’ and fan zones for children
  34. TRAIL BLAZERS GO INTO 2016-17 SEASON LOADED WITH FRESH FAN EXPERIENCES, NEW BROADCAST TALENT
  35. Singaporean’s idea to let fans experience F1 live using VR wins him US$50K in Texas F1 competition
  36. Bills, Sabres owners embrace fans through unified ‘One Buffalo’ app feature
  37. How to Engage Loyal Fans and Still Attract New Fans: an Exclusive Interview With Nascar CMO Jill Gregory
  38. FAN EQUITY COMMUNICATIONS: BUILD YOUR OWN REWARDS
  39. UNDERSTANDING SPORTS FAN PSYCHOLOGY AND TRANSFORMATION OF SPORTS ENTHUSIASTS INTO HARDCORE FANS
  40. HOW TO ENGAGE FANS BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER AN EVENT.
  41. NBA, NextVR To Broadcast Live Games In Virtual Reality Weekly This Season
  42. Ticketmaster, Dallas Cowboys fight fraud through mobile ticketing
  43. Lawsuit: Colts app listens in on fans’ conversations
  44. The Capitals have a Facebook Messenger bot, and it has an attitude
  45. Virtual reality will give NBA fans game experience
  46. Pyrotechnics, smashed walls and lockerrooms: Twickenham’s NFL transformation
  47. Perth Stadium sneak peek: part one
  48. Vodafone beefs up comms at Aviva Stadium
  49. Four Simple Steps to Building Fan Affinity
  50. Man City’s new iPhone offering is gimmicky – but that’s the whole point
  51. BRAE MORT TALKS ATLETICO MADRID’S VENUE VISION
  52. Islanders, Barclays working to improve the fan, player experience
  53. A first look at planned Neyland Stadium renovations
  54. The future is here: Fan-run IFL team hosting tryouts in Dallas
  55. The @Vikings US Bank Stadium: the world’s most outlandish sporting venue
  56. Front Row? Too Far Away Universities Sell ‘Experiences’ That Allow Fans to Connect Directly With Teams
  57. Fans experience emotional roller coaster during Vols game Saturday Vols fans describe roller coaster of emotion
  58. West Ham fan watches Middlesbrough game through binoculars
  59. Tottenham and NFL confident London link-up will provide mutual benefits
  60. 3 OF THE MOST IMPORTANT WAYS SPORTS FANS CONSUME CONTENT ON SOCIAL MEDIA
  61. 15 Seconds of Fame, Inc. to Bring Social Media App to Brooklyn Nets and New York Islanders games
  62. NBA fans in China now have access to view games on NBA League Pass
  63. Vodafone Qatar’s smart World Cup stadiums
  64. IBM announces first MLS partnership with Los Angeles Football Club
  65. AI is going to help sports fans battle long concession lines
  66. FIFA President Infantino unveils “FIFA 2.0: The Vision for the Future”
  67. Notre Dame and NextVR Team Up For Virtual Reality Experience
  68. ParkHub named Official Parking Partner of AT&T STADIUM
  69. Inside the football YouTube revolution: How ArsenalFanTV, The Redmen and Full Time Devils are shaking up the broadcasting landscape
  70. Vikings Rewards Help Fan Relive Photography Experience at U.S. Bank Stadium
  71. Sabres looking to build up fan experience
  72. Commologic launches new BetUP Instant product with Unibet
  73. Digital Director: Fandom And Fortune In The Connected Stadium
  74. Virtual Reality To Transform Indian Sports Fan Experience
  75. More than 5,000 visited powerlifting fan experience at Rio 2016, IPC announce
  76. 5 Ideas & Tactics for Using Data to Increase Fan Engagement
  77. Sports Geek Podcast: Scott Kegley from Minnesota Vikings on Vine, Snapchat & LOUD fans
  78. MotoGP Reaches Milestone of Half Million Daily Races on Mobile Devices
  79. The sponsorship model is broken – here’s how to fix it
  80. Sacramento Kings fans have a technological marvel in Golden 1 Center
  81. Payments Takes The (NFL Football) Field
  82. Rogers Place, Oilers’ new home, draws rave reviews
  83. Schwartz: Islanders Fans Will Notice Improvements At Barclays Center
  84. AmericanAirlines Arena Enhances Fan Experience and Increases Energy Efficiency with Eaton’s Advanced LED Lighting and Controls System
  85. The Dallas Mavericks Set a New Standard For The Mobile Fan Experience With Tixsee
  86. Tailgating Sports Marketing Upgrading Bathroom Fan Experience
  87. Deadline looms for OSU VIP Fan Experience
  88. 2016 AFL and NRL Grand Final Fan Engagement Recap
  89. XFINITY CENTER RE-ENERGIZES WITH MUSCO LED SYSTEM
  90. FanCompass pushes data monetisation solution into global marketplace
  91. First Data and Bypass Take the Seattle Seahawks Fan Experience to the Next Level
  92. Tata Communications leverages F1 partnership to innovate
  93. Sixers Announce 2016-2017 Promotional Schedule
  94. Middlesbrough fans asked to share experience of West Ham’s London Stadium by Football Supporters’ Federation
  95. Snapchat Live Story Engages Fans at Bank of America 500
  96. New York City FC’s Andrea Pirlo: ‘I love the style of sport in America’
  97. E-sports acquisitions must put fan experience first
  98. New addition to Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium will enhance fan experience
  99. Miller Park to get ‘completely transformed’ fan experience
  100. ASSOCIATED BANK FINDS BRAND LOYALTY, CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENT VIA GREEN BAY PACKERS FANS
  101. Brewers Tweak Fan Amenities
  102. NBA’s Pacers Have a Plan to Connect Fans to Beer, Burgers Faster
  103. Dallas Mavericks seek to enhance fan experience with new app
  104. RCR, NASCAR DIGITAL MEDIA PARTNER ON WEBSITE
  105. Formula E figuring out recipe for attracting both young, traditional race fans
  106. A CMO’s View: How The Palace’s email marketing brings Detroit Pistons fans home
  107. Orlando City Partners with Dimensional Innovations for Stadium Sponsor Displays
  108. ‘The Best Experience In Any Stadium’: The Delta Sky360 Club
  109. Badgers Game Day app enhances fan experience Badgers Game Day app enhances fan experience
  110. Football: Liverpool to launch global fan experience tour in Singapore on Oct 31
  111. Wi-Fi and a ‘Game Day’ mobile app give Patriots fans a powerful in-stadium experience
  112. Using Social Media to Monetize Fan Engagement | FC Bayern Munich and New York Red Bull case studies

100+ Fan Engagement and Fan Experience Articles From September 2016

Here’s a quick round up of 100+ interesting fan engagement and fan experience reads from the sports business world from the month of September 2016.

  1. VIRTUALLY THERE FOR VR
  2. Fans and players compete for stardom in the stadiums of the future
  3. New MIS president to focus on fan experience
  4. Golden 1 Center is 1st arena to have 23 all-gender bathrooms
  5. Turner Sports Enhances Ryder Cup Fan Experience With Google Technology
  6. Atlanta Braves to Feature 15 Seconds of Fame Technology During Final Games at Turner Field
  7. Hockey and beer with a view: Sea Dogs add ice-level bar
  8. SPORTTU’s Groundbreaking Media Technology Provides Personalized Sports Fan Apps to Telcos, Media Companies and Pro Leagues
  9. The psychology of a sports fan They psychology of winning and losing
  10. Stubhub’s Philadelphia 76ers Ticket Marketplace is Live
  11. Associated Bank’s Ultimate Packers Fan Program puts fans in center of the action
  12. Wi-Fi upgrades underway for Lions fans at Ford Field
  13. Virtual Reality Arrives at Sports Venues, Giving Fans Immersive Experiences
  14. WHO ARE YA? MIAMI HEAT ON POINT WITH DNA
  15. Sports and technology innovation collide as Sounders and Sportradar host hackathon in Seattle
  16. Twitter launches NFL hashtag emojis
  17. Fun job: Firing up Packers fans, players
  18. Lisnr, FC Cincinnati team up on new app
  19. NE Patriots Use WiFi Technology to Enhance In-Stadium Fan Experience
  20. With stadium all but done, Dolphins turn attention to fan experience
  21. ReplyBuy Brings Artificial Intelligence To The Fan Ticket Purchasing Experience
  22. New Falcons Stadium To Offer Plenty To So Many: Maria Boynton Reports
  23. How Manchester City’s partners are fueling the club’s innovation drive
  24. Manchester City: Introducing #CityPulse – Interactive Matchday Boards
  25. Behind the scenes at high-tech Levi’s Stadium, where the WiFi is never more than 10 feet away
  26. Highly Popular New England Patriots Fan Engagement Activity – Fancam – to Be Offered Throughout 2016 Regular Season
  27. Carolina Panthers kick-off improved fan experience
  28. The New Tailgating Experience At U.S. Bank Stadium
  29. BCCI launches new initiative that lets fans pick India’s ‘Dream Team’ to mark 500th Test
  30. The Fan Experience At The Rams’ Stadium Sounded Like Hell [Update]
  31. Sacramento Kings Redefining Fan Experience At Golden 1 Center With New ‘Remote Control’ AppInspirational Woman: Amy McNiven | Cardiff City Player HD TV Presenter and Fan Engagement Manager at Cardiff City Football Club
  32. Devils make deal with app company to further engage fans
  33. NAHL announces partnership with Digital Auction Showdown (DASH)
  34. Fan Engagement Through Social Digital Broadcast Platforms Reached New Heights During Rio 2016 Olympic And Paralympic Games
  35. When customers are fans: What sports teams can teach us about engagement
  36. Sports Venues Work to Balance Security and the Fan Experience
  37. Baseball glove kiosks will be part of the SunTrust Park experience
  38. Utah Jazz unveil Vivint SmartHome Arena renovation plans
  39. Big Data: the game changer
  40. Man City link with new launch Ballr app for fan engagement in Asia
  41. Inspirational Woman: Amy McNiven | Cardiff City Player HD TV Presenter and Fan Engagement Manager at Cardiff City Football Club
  42. BIG TICK FOR NRL FINALS FAN EXPERIENCE
  43. Women of RED Host Epic Fan Experience
  44. Devils will provide personal videoboard replays to fans
  45. Clubs and fans connect in a new digital world
  46. Football takes to social media in crowded contest for fan allegiance
  47. Summer of Sports: Stories, Stats, and Fan-Driven Content
  48. SportsManias, NFLPA Partner To Create Real-Time Emojis
  49. Will humanoid robotics score for Manchester City?
  50. Sacramento Kings app lets you hail an Uber and talk to a chat bot
  51. Texas Tech, Stanford Football Big Believers In Virtual Reality
  52. Romain Grosjean: American owners could revolutionise F1 spectacle
  53. #Portada16: Marketers Talk About The Challenges of Reaching Soccer Fans
  54. OSU football: Stadium striping latest evolution of fan experience in Stillwater
  55. SAP ENHANCE MATCHDAY EXPERIENCE WITH #CITYPULSE
  56. How virtual reality is transforming the sports industry
  57. Bills ‘Color Rush’ Home Opener vs. Jets Features Enhanced Experience for Fans
  58. For the 2016 Season, the NFL Turns Up New Wireless Communication, Virtual Reality
  59. Notre Dame Enhances Fan Experience and Energy Efficiency with New LED Lighting System
  60. Lions upgrading fan experience at Ford Field
  61. Mobilitie Brings Wireless Connectivity and Fan Experience Full Circle at Toyota Park
  62. The New Tailgating Experience At U.S. Bank Stadium
  63. NASCAR aims to make the Chase an interactive fan experience
  64. Hyundai’s Promise To Give NFL Fans A Better Experience Begins At Kickoff
  65. North Harbour Rugby delights fans of beer
  66. Seahawks Throw for Delta SkyMiles with Launch of 12status Engagement Program
  67. Cardinals rank among most affordable fan experience
  68. New Flight Tool Helps Football Fans Experience the Season in Stadium
  69. Yulman teams up with AT&T to provide more interactive fan experience
  70. Octagon Singapore Launches Virtual Experience For Standard Chartered Bank And Liverpool FC Fans
  71. NASCAR’S INAUGURAL FAN APPRECIATION WEEKEND KICKS OFF AT RICHMOND
  72. How the Dallas Cowboys Use Your Nose Against You
  73. Zebra Technologies Implements Chips Into Footballs For NFL Thursday Night Games
  74. SportsGeek: Josh Biren from FamousFan: Sports Start Up Series
  75. 2016 Rio Paralympics: Fan Zone lets spectators participate in events as athletes do
  76. Amazon partners with San Francisco 49ers to offer one hour Prime Now deliveries for tailgaters
  77. Bud Light Toasts Broncos Fans With Season Kickoff Beer Giveaway
  78. NEW UMD BULLDOG FAN INITIATIVES ANNOUNCED FOR 2016-17
  79. Liverpool FC ranked No.1 by VisitFootball
  80. City Football Group’s chief commercial officer Tom Glick shares insights on its sports model
  81. CFL LAUNCHES UPDATED MOBILE APP WITH FAN-FOCUSED FEATURES
  82. Two New Fan Zones Coming to EMU Football Gamedays
  83. How brands can feed the appetite of the 24 hour sports fan
  84. FALCON STADIUM ENHANCEMENTS TO IMPROVE GAME DAY EXPERIENCE
  85. Reviewing An Innovative Connected Experience With Manchester City’s CityMatchDay App
  86. New emphasis on fan experience at football games a welcome change
  87. Schwartz: American Express Fan Experience Gives US Open Ticketholders Chance To Feel Like A Tennis Star
  88. FanNav Sports App Sets Launch Record across Big Ten, SEC & Big 12
  89. Brands Adopt Clutter-Breaking Digital Marketing Strategies through US Open for Fan Engagement
  90. Blackmagic on improving the ‘match day experience’ with AV
  91. Ole Miss and Hopscotch Launch Mobile App for Rebel Fans
  92. Fan engagement experts announced for ConfEx panel
  93. Step off the wood: New policy asks fans to not stand on bleachers at Kyle FieldAn NBA journeyman wants to take you inside his life via virtual reality
  94. IBM’s Watson makes US Open debut
  95. Soccer fan support in Portland continues to rise, but can Timbers meet demand for more seats in the stands?
  96. UCF, FSU football fans urged to prep for new security policy
  97. Free events surround NFL kickoff festival in Denver
  98. UConn Fans Bring High Expectations For Opening Night Football Game
  99. eSports: What’s next for brand sponsorship now gaming’s gone mainstream?
  100. Embracing the ‘Game-Day experience’
  101. Andy Roddick Demonstrates New Monetization Strategy For Twitter During US Open
  102. Friday Night Lights brighter at Prescott High School
  103. Switch Digital Appointed By Football Federation of Australia
  104. Baseball Hall of Fame Tour brings fans into the baseball experience
  105. Urban Meyer: Ohio State players, fans get to experience magic
  106. Fans generally unfazed by heightened security measures at Beaver Stadium
  107. Mercedes-Benz Stadium progress and impressions
  108. How technology is making the US Open a better fan and player experience
  109. Responsible Fans Rewarded at Darlington Raceway
  110. Liverpool offers Premier League’s best matchday experience, says stadium assessment scheme
  111. Disabled sports fans ‘feel frustrated and isolated’ by unfit venues says charity
  112. Liverpool win Anfield accolade ahead of Premier League rivals
  113. Attending the Battle At Bristol? 11 tips/hacks for the ultimate fan experience
  114. Daytona Rises to the Top of the World for Fan Experience and Stadium Technology
  115. Nine times female sports fan engagement was condescending and sexist
  116. Open house was “cool” experience for young UK women’s basketball fan
  117. Why Sports is the Next Digital Innovation Hub

 

 

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs NRL Fan Experience Review

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Last Friday night (29-7-2016) I was able to take in the National Rugby League’s Canterbury Bulldogs game against St George Illawarra Dragons at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium and was really impressed with some of the things that the team there are doing to enhance the match day fan experience for rugby league fans.

Under the leadership of fan engagement manager Arnaleah Hunt, the Bulldogs fan experience (along with the Melbourne Storm and the Brisbane Broncos) features some of the best fan engagement activations I have seen over the course of my travels in the past three years working with audioBoom. Since 2014, I’ve visited the majority of NRL, AFL and Australian based Super Rugby club’s home fan experience set up’s and the Bulldogs, Storm, Broncos, GC Suns, GWS Giants and Port Adelaide are among the best in the business.

I met up with Arnaleah at 4pm on a chilly but sunny Sydney afternoon at Gate L where I was then led around ANZ Stadium (which now also features a variety of local craft beer options) to check out the various activations starting with the nice blue carpet that worked as a Bulldogs member’s loyalty entrance.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

It was inspiring to hear Arnaleah’s thoughts on fan engagement as we talked about how we both agreed that activations don’t always need to be expensive as so much of creating the fan experience is down to creativity, innovation and thinking outside the box to get fans, especially the young ones excited and coming back game after game.

One idea that the Bulldogs have had in 2016 has been the creation of The Canterbury Breed which has seen the Bulldogs squad transformed into superheroes with trading cards, face masks and posters all given out to members for free on match days.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Walking around the ground before the game to take in all of the fan engagement activities it was clear to see that the Bulldogs have gone above and beyond for fans young and old to create some memorable match day experiences.

The Bulldogs ‘Dog Box’ which sees members get the chance to watch the game from the half way line next to the coaches box in their very own fan cave was a cool idea complete with free programs, drinks and plenty of photo opportunities.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

The Dogs also have a Kia sponsored sideline seat set up for selected members to take in the game from a closer vantage point (yes that’s a ridiculous image of me below in my fan engagement element) while the Delivery Hero sponsored buggy allows a fan the chance to take the kicking tee and match ball out at the start of the game.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

The Bulldogs DJ takes social media requests from fans for songs on game day while the ‘Player Post’ box is a nice idea with an educational element for young kids who are able to write a letter to their favourite player and post it in the Bulldogs post box.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

It was really impressive to also see the free game day guide that fans can pick up which includes an ‘activation map’ listing all of the fan engagement activities as well as the rules of rugby league, a profile on the club and a season draw.

The Dogs really value the importance of listening to their fans and have a suggestion box set up in the main fan zone area where fans can leave their suggestions on how to continue to improve the match day experience. I’ve seen a similar set up at Fulham at Craven Cottage with their post box so this was also impressive to see.

What was also impressive and somewhat hilarious to see was the poor bloke below who was being swamped by excited kids as he handed out free Bulldogs trading cards and then packs of trading cards to fans as they entered through the gates. Fans were also given free lollies on entry and free raffle numbers which were part of a promotion over the course of the night whereby one fan walked away with 5K and 20-30 others grabbed free prizes over the course of the game. It was a good way to promote sponsors, give prizes away to fans and get more people through the gates.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

The Bulldogs fan experience is certainly one of the better NRL and Australian team match day’s and Bulldogs fans should be proud of the work that both Arnaleah and the team do for them to provide an exceptional day out at the football.

Bulldogs NRL

Bulldogs NRL

100+ Fan Engagement and Fan Experience Articles From May 2016

Here’s a quick round up of 100+ interesting fan engagement and fan experience reads from the sports business world from the month of May 2016.

  1. Football fans to get smartphone vote to substitute player
  2. Nissan And Play Station Partner To Bring Fans Attending UEFA Champions League Final Today A Unique Experience
  3. Indy 500 at 100: The Fan Experience Gets an Upgrade at IMS
  4. LA LIGA MAY FINE CLUBS WHO SHOW EMPTY SEATS ON TELEVISION
  5. The best things in life are rarely easy
  6. WiFi at Headingley: 560GB not-out
  7. SPORT BUSINESS IN DIGITAL: THE DIZZYING DISRUPTION OF SPORT
  8. Leinster Rugby Is Pioneering Digital Innovation In A Traditional Setting
  9. HOME OF ATLANTA UNITED, MERCEDES-BENZ STADIUM BEGINS REVOLUTIONIZING THE GUEST EXPERIENCE
  10. The Lightning Projected Mario Kart On The Ice Between Periods
  11. Atlanta Falcons putting an end to price gouging on concession food
  12. Best in Mobile Fan Experience
  13. If StarbucksUK ran football- Mark Bradley
  14. Customers Score Big as Sprint Provides Exclusive Free Access with No Data Charges to Every Live Match of 2016 Copa América Centenario with fuboTV
  15. Lightning nominated for sports business ‘Team of the Year’
  16. Atlanta Falcons: Mercedes-Benz Stadium Interview with Senior VP Mike Gomes
  17. New fan council takes aim at ban on umbrellas
  18. Roland Garros presents new fan experiences for 2016 French Open
  19. Hyundai creates immersive fan experience for Euro 2016
  20. Full fan experience during opening weekend at home for Canaries
  21. BST: Fan representation must be done properly
  22. Spotlight: Stadia Solutions
  23. Bigger is Better: UCF Football and Basketball are getting new video boards
  24. Selling soccer to the States: The growth of MLS and the beautiful game in the US
  25. Improving the fan experience with technology
  26. EA SPORTS UFC 2 Introduces All New Competitive Gaming Experience
  27. SMT Partners With THE PLAYERS Championship to Elevate Fan Experience
  28. Fan experience for Angie’s List Grand Prix
  29. Cardinals activate free Wi-Fi at Busch Stadium
  30. ‘A True Ticket Exchange Program’
  31. Fan Dome Provides The Ultimate Experience For UK Football Fans
  32. Harbhajan Singh unveils mobile sporting app –’Ballr’
  33. 5 ways to leverage sports analytics to grow your fan base
  34. Dover Is Exactly How NASCAR Should Be
  35. Fans encouraged to arrive early for Military Appreciation Night vs. Colorado
  36. Doc: FC Cincy fan experience top notch
  37. Villanova sends out Pavilion survey about renovations, gameday experience and more
  38. Michigan International Speedway revs up its Wi-Fi capability with new hotspots
  39. BOOSTING THE FAN EXPERIENCE AT SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY
  40. How a souvenir football in Mexico City sparked a four-decade love affair with the Cleveland Browns
  41. Jazz Fest organizers celebrate 30 years
  42. Monterosa’s LViS Platform will be used for UEFA 2016
  43. How the Kentucky Derby Is Raising the Stakes for its Fans
  44. At Charlton, giant nets and sniffer dogs offer the ‘unique fan experience’
  45. AFL fans to help determine fate of on-screen shot clock
  46. Philadelphia Eagles’ Sustainability Efforts Soar to New Heights
  47. Man City trials first live VR match in London, New York and Melbourne
  48. Golf’s ‘Players Championship’ Is Finally Going High-End
  49. A New Kind of Fantasy Sports Sweeps Through Asia with the Launch of Ballr
  50. Scoreboard for new Rogers Place will be largest in the NHL
  51. NASCAR: What It’s Like To Experience Dover
  52. Virtual reality the future for Canucks fans
  53. Carrier Dome to undergo facelift, new fan experience
  54. How Sports Teams Are Using Podcasts To Engage Their Fans in 2016
  55. Strength In Numbers GSW
  56. Carlsberg partners with DSTV for Euro 2016 fan experience
  57. Vodafone Qatar eyes smart stadiums for 2022
  58. NEW STADIUM REVOLUTIONIZING GUEST EXPERIENCE
  59. Tribe Hackathon to enhance Cleveland Indians’ fans experience
  60. Hey Who Dey Nation!
  61. New Britain Bees experience not quite the Rock Cats, but it’s still worth the trip
  62. Oregon basketball attendance numbers rebound as foundation is put in place for future
  63. 3 STEPS TO GET YOUR BRAND NAME ON VIRAL FAN-GENERATED CONTENT
  64. How to document the stadium experience
  65. Trail Blazers Partner With Microsoft Cortana To Get Smarter With Ticket Sales
  66. Paul Allen’s Portland Trail Blazers use Microsoft’s Cortana technology to sell tickets and engage fans
  67. New owner of Binghamton Mets aims to improve fan experience
  68. A preview of the Braves new home
  69. The Irishman leading the mile-high rugby revolution in sports-mad Denver
  70. Welcome, Raptors fans, to Jurassic* Park
  71. Incorporating virtual reality into the fan experience was lengthy research project for Cavs
  72. Monterosa aims to put fans at the heart of Euro
  73. Overwhelming response for VIVO IPL Fan Park
  74. LED video display manufacturer integrates venue LED lighting into game-day experience
  75. FAN VIOLENCE AND STADIUM SECURITY IS AN ETERNAL ISSUE IN SERBIA
  76. Albion fans around the world have eyes on the big game Sally freedman and fellow Albion fans get together on the beach at Melbourne Simon Reynolds with son Radd, nephew John and brother Chris
  77. Texas Rangers New LED Lighting System Will Save Money, Provide Better Broadcast Experience
  78. Building Loyalty Through Fan-First Marketing
  79. ATP And Infosys Launch New ATP Stats Leaderboards Offering New Insights To Fans
  80. Cavs and Budweiser Team Up to Bring Virtual Reality Experience
  81. Promotions aid fan experience at Sounds games
  82. PGA TOUR Improves Fan Experience with Mitsubishi Electric Diamond Vision 10mm Pitch Scoreboards
  83. SportTechie Startup Profile Series: IdealSeat Provides Data About The Experience That Changes The Game
  84. Buenos Aires Football Club Tests Implanting A Microchip In Fans To Help With Stadium Security
  85. USU football: Upgraded stadium to include new video boards, sound system
  86. Churchill Downs Launches New App For Kentucky Derby
  87. VR reinventing social sport experience
  88. First Kentucky Derby Museum Fan Fest is a Triple Crown Success
  89. Groundbreaking Technology To Enhance Fan Experience Will Be Unveiled at Cavaliers Playoff Games
  90. Hyundai FanDome
  91. San Jose Sharks Showing New Appreciation for Fans
  92. VIRTUAL REALITY: THE STADIUM VS THE SOFA
  93. How Viacom Lab intends to rethink fan engagement and experiences
  94. Who ate all the pies? The importance of food in the Australian sporting experience
  95. Managing fan experience for engaging and profitable events
  96. Stadium owners: It’s time to modernise to monetise
  97. Fan Experience: The Atlanta Hawks Season
  98. Roland-Garros s’annonce extraordinaire avec Perrier
  99. Derby Day Gigapixel
  100. BARCLAYS CENTER CREATES A DIGITAL FAN EXPERIENCE VIA INTERACTIVE APP
  101. OLYMPIQUE LYONNAIS BLAZING A TRAIL FOR FAN EXPERIENCE APPS IN EUROPE
  102. U.S. Bank Stadium News & Notes – May 6, 2016
  103. Wi-Fi, Big Data and Mobile Apps Help Stadiums Generate Extra Revenue [#Infographic]
  104. Washington Redskins Use Research to Significantly Improve Fan Experience
  105. SportTechie Startup Profile Series: Rukkus Lets Fans Browse And Buy Tickets Via Virtual Reality
  106. AT&T Launches Olympics ‘Fanmate’ Experience

How Sports Teams Are Using Virtual Reality To Enhance The Fan Experience

Even though still in it’s infancy, the rise and popularity of Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) is permeating into every industry in the world from video games and education to health and the arts with the sports business leading the way in a number of exciting areas.

Teams and stadiums, predominately from the US but also in the UK, Europe and here in Australia are realising the potential of AR/VR to engage their fans as this is being seen as “the next evolution of human story telling at a whole new level” and we all understand the value of storytelling for driving home positive and deeper fan experiences. 

This blog takes a look at what sports businesses, teams and stadiums are doing around the world to engage their fans and enhance the fan experience with virtual and augmented reality technology.

Have you seen something else or think I’ve missed a great idea in this space? Hit me up on @MrBlairHughes on Twitter and share what else is happening in this VR/AR world.

USA

HeadcaseVR

This company collects “depth data capture” which uses 360-degree cameras and sensors to help teams access new data and analytics like how many seconds a football was in the air for or how fast it was thrown.

San Francisco Giants MLB

The Giants have teamed up with Jaunt to produce content using 360 degree video technology. At home games, fans have the chance to experience virtual reality by checking out the Giants social media centre where they have the opportunity to try on Samsung Gear VR headsets to experience the club’s new VR. The VR experience allows members to feel like they are at a training game and get an intimate, field level view of the action. Fans are also able to turn 360-degrees and feel like they are in the infield for practice.

Giants VR

Giants VR

Giants VR

Giants VR

Boston Red Sox MLB

The Red Sox have embraced virtual reality by having new virtual reality booths at Fenway Park this season. Red Sox fans have a chance to see the team up close and in 360 degrees. The technology made its debut recently with three dugout-themed booths stationed through the ballpark with each having several VR headsets for fans to get closer into the action. The club have admitted that the future is uncertain as to how they will use VR but that it’s an important piece of technology.

US Soccer

Looking to change their logo, US soccer released the final design on Google Cardboard for fans to experience this in virtual reality.

Rukkus

This new app lets fans browse and buy tickets using virtual reality.

Rukkus

Rukkus

Rukkus

Rukkus

NASCAR

Making it’s debut recently at the Daytona NASCAR,  the XFINITY Virtual Reality Experience simulates an on-track experience for fans.  Fans are able to experience what it’s like to drive a race car and experience the action.

NASCAR has also put fans behind the wheels in this new Mountain Dew virtual reality activation.

 

Cleveland Caveliers NBA

The Cavs teamed up with Budweiser recently to venture into the realm of fully immersive, 360-degree VR videos. The Cavs gave away a limited number of specially designed Budweiser-cardboard viewing headsets to fans at games recently and represents the first team in the NBA to have VR natively built into their official team mobile app and one of the only teams in the league to offer exclusive VR content. The technology debuted with an exclusive VR video that took fans inside the game day experience.

Cavs VR

Cavs VR

US OPEN 2016 Tennis

Fans at the US Open were able to try out this virtual reality experience which saw them try to return a serve from Maria Sharapova

NFL

The NFL teams and stadiums have been rolling out some impressive VR experiences recently with the 50th Super Bowl no exception. VR demos at SB50 enabled fans to transport onto the sidelines, beneath huddles and into locker rooms at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.

Here’s a quick look at the VR experiences from the Jaunt Super Bowl booth.

On one of my recent US fan experience treks I also played around with SAP’s 49er’s Quarterback Challenge kiosk at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara where fans can use VR to feel what it’s like to be a quarterback under pressure from a tough defence.

49ers VR

49ers VR

49ers VR

49ers VR

49ers VR

49ers VR

New England Patriots

The Patriots have released this new VR experience for Patriots fans that was launched by Google Cardboard, in partnership with VISA and Bank of America, named “Travel Inside The Game“.

The idea was to immerse fans in the reality of last year’s SuperBowl winners, using a 360° video experience that saw 10,000 of the headsets handed out by the club.

NY Jets

The Jets have been experimenting with VR tech since the last NFL season and which has seen fans become immersed into the training sessions.

Here is a good chat with the NY Jets Seth Rabinowitz did with Fanalyse on their audioBoom channel talking about the Jets use of virtual reality. 

Boxing

Through virtual reality, the Jacobs Vs Ouillin bout was broadcast live to fans in VR through the Haymaker 360 App. The company used multiple cameras to create a 360-degree video where viewers were able to pan in all directions and view the match from different perspectives as well as access exclusive VR content on Haye’s workout and everyday life.

Horse Racing- Kentucky Derby

NBC Sports Group teamed up with NextVR at the Kentucky Derby to produce the first-ever live VR horse-racing experience.

NextVR Kentucky Derby

NextVR Kentucky Derby

 

College Basketball

Virtual Reality company NextVR teamed up with Fox Sports to live stream the quarterfinal, semifinal and championship games of this year’s Big East tournament.

NextVR

NextVR

http---mashable.com-wp-content-uploads-2015-10-grvr0897

 

NHL

For the NHL All Stars games, the NHL gave fans who could not attend a second chance to experience each event and feel like they were there.

First up was this compilation piece from the 2016 Honda NHL® All-Star Game. Utilizing the Jaunt ONE camera to provide a full 360-degree VR experience of the action, fans received an on-ice position at the Honda NHL® Skills Competition™, a seat on the glass for the NHL All-Star Game and other unique vantage points, including standing next to the press at media day and a look inside the locker room.

LA Kings

Last October I checked out the Staples Centre and the LA Kings fan engagement and got to trial the PictureMe activation from Toshiba. The augmented reality activation enabled me to have the mascot transformed into a picture of us both. Toshiba states that it is bringing a mobile focus to basketball fans’ experiences at Los Angeles’s Staples Center by rolling out an augmented reality application that curates true-to-life pictures of team players with game attendees, allowing guests to enjoy a memorable photo opportunity.

LA Kings VR

LA Kings VR

LA Kings VR

LA Kings VR

LA Kings VR

LA Kings VR

NY Rangers

The Rangers have a goal set up that sees fans try to defend the goals as pucks fly in from the star players as the fan wears a VR head set. 

NY Rangers VR

NY Rangers VR

NY Rangers VR

NY Rangers VR

Stanford University- STRIVR

Stanford University teamed up with STRIVR to develop a virtual reality simulator that is revolutionizing sports training.

MMA- Bellator

Bellator plans to go behind the scenes and let viewers experience fighters’ pre-bout rituals, practice rounds and training regimens.

MMA VR

MMA VR

MMA VR

MMA VR

 

UEFA- Euro2016

UEFA has teamed up with Nokia and their OZO professional VR Camera PC-01 to give VR viewers a 360-degree shot throughout the stadium during multiple games, including some of the England, Wales and Northern Ireland matches.

Euro 2016

Euro 2016

England

MCFC

Manchester City partnered with LiveLike and Sky Sports to bring City fans in London, New York and Melbourne closer to the game through virtual reality. LiveLike had fans put on a Samsung Gear VR headset and enter into a virtual stadium where they could maneuver to see the live broadcast, replays, stats and highlights.

MCFC VR

MCFC VR

 

Liverpool FC

LFC fans from all over the world were able to experience YNWA in full 360 by clicking and dragging the screen below.

England Rugby

England set up a VR experience for fans at the Six Nations recently whereby fans could try out a Samsung ‘School of Rugby’ game on the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and Samsung Gear VR headsets with the game challenging their reaction speeds against rugby stars Martin Johnson and Lawrence Dallaglio.

England: Wear The Rose

England allowed fans back in 2014 to experience virtual reality with Oculus and let fans train with the England rugby team. The Oculus Rift experience put fans right in the middle of the action and gave them a 360 degree view throughout.

Australia

Cronulla Sharks NRL

The Cronulla Sharks unveiled their ‘SharkPark3D’ virtual reality where fans can experience the home ground with Google Cardboard’s head set.

SharkPark3D Virtual Reality

SharkPark3D Virtual Reality

SharkPark3D Virtual Reality

SharkPark3D Virtual Reality

F1 Australian Grand Prix

Apart from offering a wealth of fan experiences, the AUSGP also featured a virtual reality ‘BIG HELMET’ this year which let fans immerse themselves in the helmet of a Formula 1 driver.

AUSGP Big Helmet

AUSGP Big Helmet

Port Adelaide Power AFL

The Power in conjunction with Jumpgate Virtual Reality have created a virtual classroom where players are being educated on skills through the use of  VR head sets. Port has filmed training sessions with three dimensional cameras, with the vision transferred to 3D goggles which offer 360 degree views, sighted through virtual reality goggles. “They (players) can use the goggles and all of a sudden be almost playing football while they’re on the couch, which is helping them educate,” Power coach Ken Hinkley said on Friday.

PAFC

PAFC

Port have also developed the PAFC Renault Virtual Reality Zone which allows fans to use virtual reality to run out through the banner from the team sheds.

New Zealand

All Blacks

The All Blacks Rugby Union team partnered with AIG to allow fans to experience the HAKA up close and personal with these AIG Haka 360º Experience viewer headsets that were given away to 5000 fans.

Australian Open 2016 Tennis

As part of the AO Social Shack, there was a virtual reality activation with the Aus Open 360 World ‘lab’ which let fans experience a sensory explosion from all angles of the on court action.

AUS Open VR

AUS Open VR

AUS Open VR

AUS Open VR

AUS Open VR

AUS Open VR

Netherlands

PSV Eindhoven

The Dutch football champions launched an immersive virtual reality experience which puts fans at the heart of last seasons title winning celebrations.

The new virtual reality film by PSV Eindhoven gave fans from all over the world the unique opportunity to get up close and personal with the players, as they re-live the scenes of when they won the championship title last season.

How Sports Teams Are Using Podcasts To Engage Their Fans in 2016

Podcasting and the consumption of audio on demand continues to rise in 2016 with time spent listening and user growth continuing to be on the up as brands and every day people start podcasts to showcase their passion and insights to their followers.

Podcasts made their biggest splash yet last year with the percentage of listeners being larger than ever before and with greater public awareness you didn’t have to explain what a podcast was before recommending your favourite shows.

Gone are the days when you needed expensive microphones, fully kitted out sound studios or code tangling software as podcasts in 2016 are being created professionally on smaller budgets meaning that it’s more accessible for both major sports teams, every day small businesses and people just like you and I to create. Less time and money spent on expensive equipment and arduous editing means more and more people are coming into this space at a rapid pace. Put simply, podcasting has become available for anyone to get started on a show that interests them.

But why has podcasting become such a buzz medium over the past two years, especially as it’s been around for such a long time? For instance, I remember my Behavioural Studies lecturers at the University of Queensland uploading lecture podcasts to our online portal in 2004. Naturally podcast consumption has risen because of our access to smart phones (and possibly larger data plans!) where we can now access our favourite podcasts on the go when we want, which is also due to podcast apps just like ours at audioBoom. Podcasts also enable a level of intimacy for a listener to drift off and dive into niche subject matter or conversely multi-task with other activities. Finally, podcasting now has a clear avenue for monetisation meaning big and smaller players in this market have a new revenue stream and as we’re seeing first hand, this is growing fast with advertisers realising the potential of audio on demand.

At audioBoom we work with hundreds of global sports teams from big players in the English Premier League and NFL to grassroots clubs in local competitions from all around the world. The benefits of using podcasts and other audio content to engage your fans are endless with the content that is being created often focusing on compelling storytelling and exclusive and intimate access that fans are not often privy to and which in the end drive deeper connections between the team and their fans.

Major international sporting clubs are using audioBoom because not only do we host and distribute their audio we also provide insightful deeper analytics and monetise this content through our diverse advertising solutions involving live reads, video, audio and companion advertising. Moreover audioBoom posts play natively on social media while our crisp custom embeds integrate very well on web pages. We deliver over 30,000 hours of content to over 30m people every month and generate over 35m monthly listens and we do all of this while being free to use.

Below are a few content examples of how teams use audio on audioBoom to engage their fans while this handy ideas sheet I put together details 100 ideas that sporting teams can use to engage their fans with audio.

100 audioBoom Fan Engagement Ideas

100 audioBoom Fan Engagement Ideas

Podcasts

Leicester City Football Club (English Premier League)

Essendon Bombers Football Club (AFL) ‘Bomber Radio’

Geelong Cats (AFL) ‘PodCats’

Carlton Blues (AFL) ‘Two Tones’

Road To The Draft (AFL)

Brisbane Lions (AFL) ‘From The Players Lounge’

West Coast Eagles (AFL) ‘Back Chat’

Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL) Columbus Blue Jackets

Columbus Blue Jackets

Columbus Blue Jackets

Previews

Rugby.com.au (Australia ARU)

West Bromwich Albion (Premier League)

Harlequins (Rugby Union)

Brisbane Lions (AFL)

Match Reports

Aston Villa (English Premier League)

Stoke City (Premier League)

Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL)

Cricket New Zealand BlackCaps

Exclusive Interviews

NZ All Blacks (Rugby Union)

Birmingham City FC

Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL)

Match Day Audio Updates

Australian Open (Tennis)

FIFA Women’s World Cup

Game Highlights
England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB)

Warrington Wolves (Super League)

ICC Cricket World Cup 2015

War Cry’s

Essendon Bombers (AFL)

ICC Cricket World Cup

Radio Interviews

Collingwood Magpies (AFL)

Adelaide Crows (AFL)

On the go recording

Western Sydney Wanderers (A-League)

Victorian Racing Club- Melbourne Cup Horse Racing

Fan Chats

Jacksonville Jaguars (NFL)

A-League

FIFA Women’s World Cup

Socceroos

Press Conferences

St Kilda (AFL)

Brisbane Roar (A-League)

West Ham United (English Premier League)

Wakefield Trinity Wildcats (Super League)

Fan Engagement

Socceroos

Carlton Blues (AFL)

Carlton also engage their fans with exclusive on demand audio through their audioBoom channel as part of their Blues Wall of Fame at Ikon Park the club have installed a beautifully tiled wall of famous players and moment which each have a QR Code that links back to an audioBoom post therefore meaning that a fan can come out to the club and use their phone to interact with the feature while also hearing interesting insights and sounds from that era as they walk along.

Carlton Fan Engagement audioBoom Wall of Fame

Carlton Fan Engagement audioBoom Wall of Fame

 

Hockey Australia- 12 Days of Hockey

Hockey Australia had fans record in their own piece of audio commentary calling a game as part of their 12 days of hockey in the lead up to Christmas

Hockey Australia

Hockey Australia

 

audioBoom Recording Widget For Fan Interaction

Carlton Blues (AFL) ‘Thank 5’

Gold Coast Suns (AFL) ‘Voice of The Suns’

 Team Speeches

Western Bulldogs (AFL)

Melbourne Demons (AFL)

 Club Songs

Sydney Swans (AFL)

Community Engagement

St Kilda (AFL)

 
If you’re at a team and want to know how we can help you engage your fans through audio get in touch with me at Blair@audioBoom.com and be sure to check out our business site here for more information http://choose.audioboom.com/

100+ Fan Engagement and Fan Experience Articles From April 2016

FE Monthly Round Up Articles

FE Monthly Round Up Articles

 

Here’s a quick round up of 100+ interesting fan engagement and fan experience reads from the sports business world from the month of April 2016.

Plenty of food for thought here such as the implantable microchips being rolled out to one Argentinian clubs fan base. Now that’s one way to collect fan data!

1. 5 Sports Stadiums That Score Big With CX

2. Here’s how a Charlotte startup helped launch Turner Classic Movies’ fan club

3. Churchill Downs Launches New Mobile App To Enhance Fan Experience At The Racetrack

4. This Company Lets Sports Fans Know If a Stadium Ran Out of Hot Dogs

5. 2016 NFL Draft Fan Experiences Feature Smartspeed Timing System

6. USL Productions Aims to Elevate Fan Experience

7. Trisect Wins AOR Duties for The Chicago Bears

8. Bengals give loyal fan draft-day experience

9. THE RELAUNCHED RUGBY.COM.AU WEBSITE SHOWS FANS RUGBY FROM ALL SIDES

10. Mountain Hawk Rewards app implemented to increase engagement

11. Pirate fans excited about stadium renovations

12. Express your Virginia Tech spirit with the new Hokiemoji keyboard

13. Spotless Stadium voted best AFL venue for fan experience, beating Gold Coast’s Metricon Stadium

14. Dolphins Season Ticket Members To Receive Exclusive NFL Draft Experience

15. Bud Light Levels Up The Esports Fan Experience With The Introduction Of A New All-Star Program

16. Responsible NASCAR Fans Rewarded at Richmond International Raceway

17. Hornets jazz up fan experience to improve home court advantage

18. Sports Fans and Social Media, Part 2: Perils, Pitfalls and Best Practices

19. How We Got Here: Major League Sports And The New Frontier Of Broadcasting

20. New $3.3M video boards at Mackay, Lawlor go before Regents

21. Redblacks add ‘experience zone’ to TD Place

22. Can the FIFA Interactive World Cup fan experience compare to a live game?

23. What is one trend you’re watching in sports facility design and construction?

24. Toronto Raptors fans flock to Jurassic Park for ‘crazy’ experience

25. The Detroit Pistons Are Using Traditional Emails In A New Way To Engage Fans

26. IoT disrupts the Tour de France

27. Why Rutgers coach Chris Ash wants to enhance the student-fan experience

28. NBA teams can still pack in the fans, even if they don’t win

29. Fans flock to Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach for fast cars, food, fun

30. SportTechie Startup Profile Series: Dasdak Turns Stadium Mobile Services Into Mobile Sales

31. Warriors Ground Tailgate— a foodie, fan-friendly experience

32. Dallas Mavericks Head Into The Playoffs With A New Emoji Keyboard App

33. Video Walls by Userful Enhance Fan Experience at Tampa Bay’s Amalie Arena

34. Here’s why football clubs are in a digital arms race

35. Improving the fan experience at The PLAYERS Championship

36. Why winning global fan league has become a priority for football clubs

37. 4 Data Points All Sports Teams Should Be Using

38. ARU CEO says no alternative to Allianz

39. Jersey Over Apron: Virtual fan experience

40. Sporting KC Uphoria app expands to include new ticketing features in 2016

41. Fandom Daily Changes Fantasy Sports for the Better

42. The FANchise Will Be The World’s First Fan-Run Professional Sports Team

43. Can The NFL Deal Improve User Engagement On Twitter?

44. Building a Fan Base: Yard Goats sell baseball ‘experience’ to lure fans

45. New Vikings app will provide all the comforts with just a tap

46. Diamondbacks register lowest cost to fans for 10th straight season

47. Red Sox to offer fans virtual reality experience at Fenway

48. At Calfee, it’s all about the ‘fan experience’

49. SportTechie Startup Profile Series: Hopscotch Helps Teams Launch, Manage And Monetize Mobile Apps

50. Big crowds mean lots of work for Kauffman Stadium lost and found

51. U.S. Cellular Field to Unveil High-Definition LED Spectacular in Center Field

52. How the Portland Trail Blazers are embracing technology to engage fans and sell more tickets

53. IBM Tees Up Digital Birdie’s-Eye View of The Masters

54. Van Zeyl confident BMO Field will provide more pleasant fan experience

55. Celtics Announce Playoff Sponsors, Fan Activities

56. Mitchell Johnson talks about his relationship with Virat Kohli and IPL fan experience

57. The Detroit Pistons Are Sending Emails That Change Every Time Fans Check Them Movable Ink powers dynamic game-day communication By Erik Wander

58. How a Major League Baseball stadium decides what crazy food fans will eat

59. Kings Host Tech Night at Sleep Train Arena

60. Will Deal To Stream NFL Games Undermine Twitter’s Social Experience?

61. Washington Redskins Partner With Buzztime To Provide Redskins Fans With Interactive Entertainment Year-Round

62. Sports Sponsorship in India up by 12 % last year

63. La Liga aims to grow fans’ experience

64. Fans experience NCAA Championship game from all levels

65. Associated Bank’s “Grand Slam Challenge” fan experience at Miller Park is a hit!

66. Turn Sports Fans Into Fans Of Your Brand

67. Vikings, VenueNext Announce Partnership to Enhance Fan Experience at U.S. Bank Stadium

68. Colorado Springs Switchbacks investing in facility improvements to enhance fan experience

69. Texas Rangers Enhance Fan Experience and Energy Efficiency at Globe Life Park with Eaton’s Advanced Ephesus LED Lighting and Controls System

70. Play ball: Nats deploy software, social media to boost game experience (Video)

71. Major upgrades for fans to enjoy at Busch Stadium

72. Jacksonville Suns owner Ken Babby creating new experience at ballpark

73. Why sponsors want more out of sports sponsorship

74. Mitel to Power Seamless, Real-Time Communications for San Diego Padres

75. MLB exhibition at Victory Field a fun experience for players, fans

76. What’s new at U.S. Cellular? Video boards, cheesy beefs and homecoming

77. Four reasons why every cricket fan must watch a match live in the stadium

78. Magic App Update Will Allow Fans To Select Team Lineups

79. Kings Fan Spin Class to Power 4K Center-Hung Video Board in New Arena

80. San Francisco Giants Ready To Give Fans Unique Virtual Reality Experience At AT&T Park

81. Olympique Lyonnais Blazing A Trail For Fan Experience Apps In Europe

82. Breaking down the best fan experiences in Vancouver sports

83. The Lady Bears’ Success on Court Boosted by Strong Fan Support

84. Tripleplay and Triple Jump Technologies partner to deliver unique connected stadium experience

85. ’Shoe refitting on tap at Ohio State

86. Great example of how new style of communication can acquire new fans!

87. Argentine football club Tigre launches implantable microchip for die-hard fans

88. Bengals give loyal fan draft-day experience

89. What the shortening human attention span means for marketers

90. Demographic segmentation: How 7 football organisations target the next generation online

91. SEAT London 2016 – a boat-load of learning!

92. Defining fan engagement

93. DENVER NUGGETS LION KING CAM FAR SUPERIOR TO KISS CAM

94. I Want to Know, Want to Go, Want to Share Fan Engagement at Warp Speed

95. Know the 5 Secrets of Formula E to Build Real Fan Engagement | Hangout Resume

97. A Game Plan for Enhancing Fan Engagement

98. PART TWO: Measuring fan engagement: an introduction

99. Inside Real Madrid’s Game Plan For Digital Domination

100. The Orlando Magic Becomes First NBA Team to Deploy and Integrate iBeacons Via Team Mobile App in Amway Center

101. WTW: Discussing Fan Engagement with Bas Schnater

102. Australian Rugby Union dives into data in new deal with sports marketing group Perform

103. Why Microsoft invests in sports: Marketing chief says ‘it’s about people’s passions’

104. How this Hollywood vet is using virtual reality and storytelling to disrupt the sports world

105. Argentinian football club begin implanting fans with season ticket microchips

 

 

 

 

Club by Club: 2016 NRL Fan Engagement and Fan Experience Activations

The 2016 National Rugby League season gets underway this week and fans across Australia and New Zealand are gearing up for what will be another exciting season of rugby league action on the field.

Conversely, there is plenty going on off the field as the teams all look to find new and creative ways to engage with their members both in the stadium and online.

I have put together a quick list of what each of the NRL clubs are doing to improve the fan experience in 2016 and it’s safe to say that there’s plenty of exciting fan engagement activations taking place at whichever club you support.

Have you seen something else that your club is doing to improve the match day and digital fan experience? Hit me up and I’ll add it to the list.

NRL

The NRL Bunker is a new addition to the match day coverage that is the most state-of-the-art video referral technology in Australian sport and is set to revolutionise the game’s decision review system and provide a better viewing experience for fans.

NRL Bunker

NRL Bunker

NRL Bunker

NRL Bunker

NRL Fantasy offers fans:

  • Over $350,000 in cash and prizes up for grabs
  • Winner claims $15,000 and the official NRL Fantasy Champions ring.
  • Enjoy match day Thursday’s and new interactive polling page
NRL Fantasy Ring

NRL Fantasy Ring

Brisbane Broncos

The Bronc’s had one of Brisbane’s City Cat’s decorated in their colours.

Broncos

Broncos

The free Broncos app features:

– An iOS design theme & layout optimised for the latest iPhone & iPad devices.
– Push Notifications to keep you updated with breaking news, score alerts & match info.

As well as News – Videos – Photo Galleries – Season Draw By Month / By Round (upload every Broncos game to your device calendar) – NRL & NYC Ladders – Team & Player Stats – Broncos Twitter (team & player accounts) – Match Tickets – Broncos Website – Broncos Membership – Broncos Superstore – Community – NRL Fantasy – NRL Tipping.

Broncos App

Broncos App

Broncos App

Canterbury Bulldogs

‘The Breed’ is the new match day activation from the Bulldogs with the club revealing each of these players through fan’s Instagram accounts.
The fans favourite Bulldogs players have been turned into Superheroes, showcasing their unique skills and reflecting their strong personalities and traits. More here The Breed

Cb35JkgUsAASR_e Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 8.34.37 am Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 8.34.09 am

Canterbury fans can also pick up free posters.

Bulldogs

Bulldogs

The  Dogs of Rewards loyalty program is worth a look to see how the club rewards fans.

The dogs have the ’18th Jersey Honour Roll’ which is a giant 18 jersey that will be displayed at the northern end of all Bulldogs home games at ANZ Stadium as a permanent reminder to every one of the contribution of Bulldogs fans.

Bulldogs 18 Jersey Honour Roll

Bulldogs 18 Jersey Honour Roll

The updated Bulldogs App features:

– Match highlights
– Picture galleries from every game
– Latest news, table and fixtures
– Push notifications for breaking news and live score updates
– Player profiles

Bulldogs App

Bulldogs App

Canberra Raiders

The raiders have run a comp for fans to design the team jersey.

Canberra Raiders

Canberra Raiders

Canberra Raiders Jersey Design Comp

Canberra Raiders Jersey Design Comp

Raiders members can also get their names on the banner that the team runs through each game.

Canberra Raiders

Canberra Raiders

The Raiders app features:

  • Access to the latest Raiders news, videos and photo galleries
  • 2015 Telstra Premiership draw and fixtures presented in a round or calendar format
  • Ladder for the Telstra Premiership and NYC
  • Full squad list with player profiles
  • Push notifications to keep you updated at all times with breaking news, score alerts and match updates
  • Access to all Raiders related sites, including membership and ticketing
Raiders App

Raiders App

Fans can follow the Raiders on SnapChat too.

Raiders on SnapChat

Raiders on SnapChat

North Queensland Cowboys

The Cowboys have held a community day for fans.

NQ Cowboys

NQ Cowboys

The Cowboys have ‘Full Time: Field Time’ at the end of every home game where fans can play on the field. Full Time Field Time

The free NQ Cowboys App features:

  • A brand new design and layout optimised for all Android Smartphone (2.3+) and Tablet (4.1+) devices
  • Access to the latest team news, videos and photo galleries
  • Telstra Premiership draw and fixtures presented in a round or calendar format
  • Ladder for the Telstra Premiership and NYC
  • Full squad list with player profiles
  • Push notifications to keep you updated at all times with breaking news, score alerts and match updates
  • Integrated Twitter feeds from the official team and player accounts
  • Access to all team-related sites, including membership, Cowboys Team Shop and ticketing

Melbourne Storm

The Storm have launched their 2016 Lightning Rewards program which is the best Australian sports fan rewards program. More info here Lightning Rewards

Lightning Rewards

Lightning Rewards

Storm 'Lightning Rewards'

Storm ‘Lightning Rewards’

Melbourne Storm 'Lightning Rewards'

Melbourne Storm ‘Lightning Rewards’

As part of Lightning Rewards, users will accrue points during the season for completing actions online, as well as earning points on game day at AAMI Park. As you build up your points balance, you will hit new reward levels.  At each level, a new reward will be made available to you.  The higher the level, the better the reward!

Lightning Rewards is a loyalty program designed to reward all of our loyal members. In 2016 the Storm have some great new additions, including following your favourite players live in-game stats to help you earn points!

The Storm offer training tips for fans here: Storm Training Tips

The new look Storm app and their SnapChat account are also worth a look. Storm SnapChat and Storm App

Storm App

Storm App

Storm SnapChat

Storm SnapChat

Melbourne also called on members to be apart of their biggest ever TV commercial.

Melbourne Storm

Melbourne Storm

The Storm have also held a member’s day as have many of the other NRL clubs.

Storm Family Day

Storm Family Day

New Zealand Warriors

Warriors fans had a chance to feature in the team photo.

NZ Warriors

NZ Warriors

Memories of the Vodafone Warriors’ stellar 2002 season have been evoked with the release of the club’s heritage strip for the 2016 NRL season produced by club sponsor Canterbury of New Zealand.

NZ Warriors

NZ Warriors

South Sydney Rabbitohs 

Souths held a mystery player signing session which is a bit of a clever idea to draw the fans/members out.

Souths

Souths

Souths fans can win an exciting fan experience by having the opportunity to hang out in the player’s enclosure during matches in 2016.

Souths

Souths

Souths have a ’Ticket Frenzy’ offer for fans to win free tickets.

Souths

Souths

The SS junior fan zone is a digital site for young fans that features memory and colouring in games. Check it out here: Souths Junior Fan Zone

Souths

Souths

Parramatta Eels

Parra let fans change up their Facebook profile pics by adding a blue and yellow over their pic.

Parramatta Eels

Parramatta Eels

The Eels are offering fans deals for special days like Valentines Day and after match wins.

Eels

Eels

Parramatta have held a Blue and Gold Army Festival fan day where free posters were also given out to fans. More info on the Blue and Gold army can be found here Blue and Gold Army

Parramatta

Parramatta

Eels

Eels

Eels fans can nab $5 match day parking for all home games.

Parra parking

Parra parking

The Eels have flag raisers as well for each home game.

Eels Flag Bearers

Eels Flag Bearers

Young fans have the opportunity to be a junior Eels reporter as well. Junior Eels Reporter

Eels Junior Reporter

Eels Junior Reporter

The team also have a playlist for each home game as voted on by the fans. This was the 2015 playlist:

Parramatta Eels Playlist

Parramatta Eels Playlist

Parra held a ‘Member’s Only’ opportunity to have member’s pictures taken with the Auckland Nines trophy.

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Parra

The Eels are also calling on fans to wear and share their Blue and Gold colours on social media and get behind #BGFridays where fans can win passes to matches and other prizes.

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The Sparky’s Brigade allows young fans to participate in digital activities as seen here: Eels Junior Fan’s Site

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Parramatta Eels

The free Eels app features include:

– A brand new design theme and layout optimised for the iPhone 5 and iPad devices ;
– Access to the latest team News, Videos and Photo Galleries;
– 2015 Telstra Premiership Draw and Fixtures presented in a round or calendar format;
– Ladder for the Telstra Premiership and Holden Cup;
– Full squad list with Player Profiles;
– Push Notifications to keep you updated at all times with breaking news, score alerts and match updates;
– Integrated Twitter feeds from the official team and player accounts; and
– Access to all team related sites, including Membership, Merchandise Store, Ticketing, Events Calendar and many more!

Parramatta App

Parramatta App

Sydney Roosters

Easts fans can win their place in the team photo.

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Roosters

The Roosters app offers:

– A brand new design theme and layout optimised for the iPhone 6 and iPad devices ;
– Access to the latest team News, Videos and Photo Galleries;
– 2016 Telstra Premiership Draw and Fixtures presented in a round or calendar format;
– Ladder for the Telstra Premiership and Holden Cup;
– Full squad list with Player Profiles;
– Push Notifications to keep you updated at all times with breaking news, score alerts and match updates;
– Integrated Twitter feeds from the official team and player accounts; and
– Access to all team related sites, including Membership, Merchandise Store, Ticketing, Events Calendar and many more!

Roosters App

Roosters App

The Roosters loyalty program recognises the importance of our Members and how valued your commitment is to the club.
Read more at Roosters Loyalty Program

The Roosters have held open training sessions for fans and have pushed out information for fans on how to sync their calendars to when games are on with a fixture list.

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Roosters

Roosters Open Training Session

Roosters Open Training Session

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Fans can learn how to make healthy recipes as part of the Raw-C program seen here Roosters Healthy Eating Recipes

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Roosters free legal advice for fans from club sponsor

Roosters Legal Advice

Roosters Legal Advice

Wests Tigers

The Tigers held a free trial game for fans.

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Wests Tigers

The Tigers have free wallpapers for fans to download as well here Wests Tigers free wallpapers

The Tigers app offers fans all the news, videos, photo galleries, draw and results, ladders, statistics, match day information, tickets, online shopping and much more. Wests Tigers App

Wests Tigers are also having themed games throughout the 2016 season. More info here Wests Tigers to adopt themes for all home games in 2016 in bid to boost engagement with fans

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Wests Tigers

St George Illawarra Dragons

Dragons fans can bid on player worn gear as well as partake in social media chats with players.

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Dragons Bids

Dragons Bids

Dragons Bids

SGI members can also have their name featured on the member’s wall.

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Dragons

The free Dragons app offers live stats and more like:

  • Latest Dragons and NRL News
  • Dragons TV – interviews and entertainment
  • Daily News Wire – media, gossip and opinion
  • Draws, Results and Ladder for NRL and NYC
  • Player profiles and statistics
  • Up to the minute Push Notifications
  • Press conferences and match highlights
  • Dragons Twitter feed
  • Ticketing and Merchandise
  • Free updates

Dragons App

Dragons App

Dragons App

Dragons fans can experience an away day with the team as well.

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Dragons

Fans can sync fixtures to their calendars here Dragons Calendars

Members can also enjoy special benefits like these Red V membership incentives Dragons RED V Incentives

Gold Coast Titans

The Titans held a base camp fan experience at CBUS Stadium on the Gold Coast where members were able to sleep over at the stadium. More here: Titans Camp Out

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GC Titans

Titans fans can help the team out on match days by being apart of the Titans crew.

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Titans

Newcastle Knights

The Knights have held a community fan day where fans were able to get their pics with the team in this custom image.

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Knights

The Knights fun quizzes for fans on social media too.

Knights Quizzes NRL

Knights Quizzes NRL

Cronulla Sharks

One of the more exciting fan engagement features from an NRL team this year has been the announcement from Cronulla about their #SharkPark3D virtual reality experience which enables fans to use a GoogleCard viewer or other Virtual Reality (VR) device, put their phone in the cardboard slot and then experience #SharkPark3D virtual reality! More here on Shark Park 3D

Cronulla #SharkPark3D

Cronulla #SharkPark3D

The Sharkies have launched ‘Sharks Rewards’ with fans able to earn rewards for supporting the club. More here: Sharks Rewards

Sharks Rewards

Sharks Rewards

The live streaming of trial games has been a highlight for fans with other clubs also doing this recently.

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Sharks

The new Sharks app is worth a look too. Sharks App

Sharks App

Sharks App

Free downloadable match day programs are also on offer for fans.

Sharks Digital Match Day Programs

Sharks Digital Match Day Programs

Penrith Panthers

The Panthers have held various player appearances around Penrith.

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Penrith

The Panther’s have a good deal for fans with a 6 game pass and a jersey for $199.

Panthers Jersey and Ticket deal

Panthers Jersey and Ticket deal

The Panther’s Oak Super Fan also sees Panther’s fans showcased on a special Instagram. Penrith OAK SUPER FAN

The Panther’s have offered fans free legal advice from a local sponsor which is a good idea.

Panthers

Panthers

The Penrith App offers:

– Access to the latest Panthers news, videos and photo galleries of training and games

– Telstra Premiership draw and fixtures presented in a round or calendar format

– Telstra Premiership and NYC Ladder

– Full squad list with player profiles

– Push notifications to keep you updated at all times with breaking news, score alerts and match updates

– Access to all Panthers related sites, including our membership site and online store

Manly Sea Eagles

The Sea Eagles are giving fans free match day programs which can be downloaded prior to the game.

Manly Match Day Programs

Manly Match Day Programs

Manly also held a members appreciation day as well.

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The Manly Loyalty Rewards program can be viewed here.

Manly has also teamed up with Netflix and Daredevil to offer this interesting video series Barrett’s Daredevil plans for round 1

Barrett's Daredevil plans for round 1

Barrett’s Daredevil plans for round 1

The Sea Eagles App features:

– A brand new design theme and layout optimised for the iPhone 6 and iPad devices ;
– Access to the latest team News, Videos and Photo Galleries;
– 2016 Telstra Premiership Draw and Fixtures presented in a round or calendar format;
– Ladder for the Telstra Premiership and Holden Cup;
– Full squad list with Player Profiles;
– Push Notifications to keep you updated at all times with breaking news, score alerts and match updates;
– Integrated Twitter feeds from the official team and player accounts; and
– Access to all team related sites, including Membership, Merchandise Store, Ticketing, Events Calendar and many more!

Sea Eagles App

Sea Eagles App

San Francisco 49ers and Levis Stadium Fan Experience

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It’s 2am and I’m up to catch a 5am flight from Kansas City to San Francisco for today’s 49ers game in Santa Clara. Today is going to be a long day of travel and probably one of the longest ‘away days’ I’ve done. I had a 530am flight to Phoenix, Arizona with a two hour lay over and then a direct flight to San Fran. By the time I make it to San Francisco it’s 10am. I make the quick trek to my hotel, dump the bags and then hit the ground running for what would prove to be another two and a bit hours of travel to the 49ers Levis Stadium. 

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Transportation

I make my way to San Francisco’s Union Station in downtown San Fran and pay US$20.50 for a day return which takes me to Levis Stadium. The huge CalTrain disembarks at 1pm packed with fans heading out early to the 5.35pm Thursday Night Football game and passes through 20 odd stations before we all disembark and cross the tracks for a small light rail type train to then take in another 20 odd stops to Mountain View station where Levis Stadium is located. It surely is a decent effort (100km or so) to get from downtown San Francisco to the stadium however with fellow NFL fans to talk to and a clean, safe and smooth ride in this modern transport it’s really quite a breeze. 

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Parking and Tailgate Set Up

I step off the train at Mountain View station, walk across the platform and the car park ($60 US per car to tailgate) and stadium are in full view and it is a sight to behold. This is a stadium which greatly defines what an outstanding fan experience is all about and as I had heard a lot about it, it was thrilling to finally be able to experience it. As I walk in I start to feel thirsty so kindly ask the first tailgater I see in if I could buy a beer off him. Without hesitation he reaches into his huge esky packed with beers, soft drinks, waters (any good tailgater knows you have to be smart with the fluids!) and the biggest Grey Goose I’ve ever seen and hands me a beer and a handshake. It’s this type of hospitality that the tailgate is famous for as within the next few minutes we’re both being offered BBQ meats, seafood and other football food staples I stay for an hour or so talking about the success of Jarryd Hayne, fan engagement, life in the US and the tailgating experience before heading into the stadium but not after the guys had given me a few more beers to get set for the night.

As I leave the car park tailgating area and head into the stadium I notice that there’s a substantial bicycle area for fans who have chosen to ride to the stadium. I remember seeing something similar at Aston Villa’s Villa Park in Birmingham in the past so it’s great to see that the stadium is accommodating to those fans who chose a healthy way to get here today.

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Levis Stadium and 49ers App’s

I had previously downloaded both the extensive 49ers and Levis Stadium app and was excited to test these two out today, especially as they are integrated with one another on game day. 

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Mobile Ticketing

After extensive security procedures that included walking through the metal detector followed by a metal detector wand search and finally a pat down I was able to continue entering the stadium. Opening the Levis Stadium app I was able to view my ticket and scan the QR code at the electronic check point to enter the stadium. 

Using today’s hashtag and the app, my name was then displayed on the screens inside the stadium which was a very cool feature, especially as the app sent me a notification informing me that my ‘check in’ was coming up on the screens. As other’s have mentioned the beauty of this is that fans can be rewarded for their first, 50th or 100th visit for example by the NiNerds.

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NiNERDS

Just as you pass through the mobile ticketing area you are greeted by the NiNerds reps who are on hand to help fans with any stadium related queries they may have. From finding your seat to where you can purchase a gluten free vegan hotdog these guys are helpful, tech savvy and are here to look after  the needs of fans. I had a great chat at the gates with Michael and Noemi but also later noticed them running around during the game helping fans with queries.  

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Way-Finding 

One of the best features in the app is the way-finding element which directs you right to your seat inside the stadium using GPS. While I normally get a kick out of doing a full inside and outside walk around a stadium, this was a great feature that gets fans to their seats quickly.

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WiFi

Free WiFi which was super fast all day long even with 70,000 here today. It made ordering food and drinks, way-finding, mobile ticketing etc all very easy. The only thing this stadium or future stadiums need now is retractable USB charges under or in front of your seats.

Cup Holders

Every seat has a cup holder. Just brilliant to keep your beer cold. 

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Food

The food options inside Levi’s Stadium rival that of some of the best stadiums for food that I’ve visited in the past such as Yankee Stadium and the MCG. 

Fans have the option of over 180 items such as garlic fries, pizzas, burgers, pretzels, hot dogs, curries, steamed buns, burritos, asian style rice bowls and BBQ fare as well as having the option to either have their food delivered to their seat or grabbing it through express pick up. It was also interesting to see a over 14 vegan food concessions and other healthy options throughout the stadium as well as plenty of craft beer varieties to choose from. 

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In-Seat Ordering 

An aspect of the app which I was keen to test was the in-seat ordering for food and drinks. While I have tried these a few times in the US in the past, this was by far the best example of how to do this. 

I started by going into the app’s in-seat ordering section. Food was fairly priced for stadium food with a fee of $5US attached to in-seat ordering which does seems a bit high (but not if you’re ordering a stack of stuff).

While there are only about 15 options to choose from (drinks, hot food, snacks) I was able to select a hotdog and gatorade, punch in my credit card details and see where the food would come from. I hit one hurdle in that I had to fake a US postcode (11111 worked) where it asks for the address details that match your credit card because my 4 digit Australian postcode was not allowing the process to continue. It obviously makes no difference though as my order was processed. This part of the app is incredibly user friendly and all in all took 90 seconds to order (after I realised I needed to make my postcode 5 digits. I guess though if you didn’t know US postcodes are 5 digits then you’d have an issue). I set the timer on my phone and watched as the app screen moved from ‘order processed’ to ‘being prepared’ to ‘en route’.

I’ve got to say that it was a pretty cool sight to watch as the Levi’s Stadium staffer walked down the aisles with a bag holding my food and drink. As Shane Harmon mentioned in his look at Levi’s Stadium a few months back, this whole process still involves a human and the one issue that that human has is that after they come down to your row they then need to identify you and get your items to you. I was in the middle of the row, about 15 seats in and although I had been watching her walk down the aisle I was able to gesture to her ‘Yep, Blair? Yep that’s my order’. The issue here and it’s obviously not a massive one, but the delivery person then needs to come all the way into your row/seat and check your phone’s order screen to see that they are delivering the items to the right person. In a way this means that they get in the way of other fans however this was a 5 second job and I doubt that it affected fans sight angles.

So how long did it take for me to order, the food to be prepared and then delivered right to my seat? 18 minutes and 31 seconds! Outstanding in my opinion and an element every stadium needs so that fans never miss any of the action or have to wait in lines. The hotdog was tasty, piping hot and came with mustard, ketchup and relish while the gatorade was ice cold. The $5 fee is probably a bit steep for just two items but if you’ve got a group of mates ordering a stack of food and drinks then it’s nothing. 

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Restroom Way-Finding

A cool function of the Levi’s Stadium app is the way-finding function in the ‘Around Me’ section of the app to show you which toilets are the closet and which have the shortest queues. I asked some of the NiNERD’s how they work out which lines are the shortest and input that into the app and was amazed to hear that there is a person standing outside each restroom area who feeds this information into the app. Again a process that needs a human to facilitate the task however a very cool feature that is thinking about fans first. 

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Fan Engagement Activations (Around Levi’s Stadium concourse)

Two hours until kick off and the concourse fan zone areas are pumping with people running around between sponsor activations and picking up freebies left, right and centre. The 49er’s sponsor stands are complimented by food trucks, bars and diverse fan zones. 

I start by checking out the ’Ninerfier’ Levi’s activation which has fans put a piece of their 49er’s gear on a mobile conveyor belt type contraption (I mean seriously, how do I describe what this thing is!) and watching it pass through various odd but colourful elements before coming off the conveyor belt and being ’Ninerfied’. Fans receive a ’Ninerfied’ pin and then have their photo taken as a memento. An interesting bit of fan engagement that really goes back to the idea of fan culture and being granted approval (‘You’re now Ninerfied!’) of sorts by the team.

I pick up a free sign and calendar from CSN and then move on to the SunPower stand where I score a free set of 49ers sunnies just by playing a bit of trivia with their quiz activation. While I wasn’t a 49ers member, 49’ers members are able to earn points by checking in every 20 minutes at the Faithful 49er’s stand. I couldn’t see myself doing this every 20 minutes to earn rewards but I’m sure hardcore fans would be taking advantage of every chance to gain points in this program to then put towards prizes and upgrades. 

Next was the SAP ‘Quarterback Challenge’ which was the first of a few virtual reality activations that I would see today. Fans had the chance to use Oculus goggles to play a game as a quarterback while over at the Toyota fan zone fans were participating in raffles and a wheel of fortune type game for prizes while TV commentators did a live outside broadcast surrounded by fans. This stand also had dedicated phone charging stations while I also counted heaps of ‘Juice Bar’s’ throughout the stadium that were often surrounded by fans charging their devices and what appeared to be making new friends. 

Continuing throughout the various stands I noticed more opportunities for fans to win prizes, enter competitions and receive freebies like packets of chips. At the NRG stand fans could pick up another pair of 49ers sunnies and have a go at snapping their photo with a players face cut out. The photo theme is a constant in fan engagement and there were another two sponsor stands that had prizes for fans who had their pictures taken. The Yahoo Sports stand were giving fans free ‘ Go Niners’ 49er’s rally towels while Intel were encouraging fans to ‘Be The SuperFan’ and have their photo taken with super hero type colours put over the top before being showcased on big screens around the stadium. 

A feature that I have seen at a few stadiums was the designated driver stand where fans can opt to be a designated driver and in return they receive a free soft drink and the chance to win prizes. The Levi’s Stadium one was called Good Sports and is sponsored by Bud Light. 

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Fan Engagement Activations (Inside Levi’s Stadium)

I made my way inside the stadium and started walking around the venue to see what was on offer for fans. 

Making my way to my seat I found a note in the cup holder telling me that our section was going to be participating in a bit of TIFO fun. It was a great sight to watch the banner come down over our heads in the stadium. 

I captured the noise meter at the stadium reaching 112.1 which was by far the loudest I had heard at any stadium where they employ this. It was actually that loud that it was almost unbearable in terms of noise, even if it was a good sight to see fans going crazy with their war cries and screams. Every effort is made in these US stadiums and arena’s to ‘Make Some Noise’ and these noise readers really help facilitate that with fans. 

Listen to the 49ers fans here

The 49ers offer merch ‘item’s of the game’ throughout the day, show fan’s selfies on the big screen, have a 49er’s band, a fire twirling squad and have game day and post game (provided they win) offers on food and even haircuts too. 

There were some more virtual reality activations inside the stadium such as this giant helmet contraption however from my observations, it seemed as though more people just wanted a photo with this than actually participate in the VR feature. 

Sponsor’s Verizon had a section for upgrades, SAP had interactive quiz machines while Yahoo had a fantasy sports touch screen wall with trivia and photo opportunities however it was a bit odd to see kids playing this when it’s a gambling type activation. 

Listen to the 49er’s drumming band here

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While the actual team needs to start winning on the field, it’s clear that this is one of the best stadiums in the world right now for providing fans with an exceptional fan experience. There are things here that fans can’t get at home therefore Levi’s Stadium are providing interesting aspects that hopefully means more fans are making their way out to the stadium and switching off from their home sports cave experience. From the beacon technology to VR work to the in-seat ordering and toilet line feature and all the little things outside of their impressive app, it’s evident that 49er’s fans have something very special here on game day and I for one can’t wait to get back here to try it all out again. 

Fordham Rams Coffey Field Fan Experience Review

Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

On Saturday morning I headed out to The Bronx to take a look at the NCAA Patriot League at Fordham University in the Fordham Ram’s home game against Holy Cross.

Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

After a bit of subway strolling through the 1 and 6 line and then a decent two mile walk from Fordham Rd subway to the University grounds I was within sight of the field and could hear the marching band’s trumpets playing as I approached. Here them now:

Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

I walked through the university grounds, found the gates to the stadium and purchased a ticket for the bargain sum of $10. Grabbing a 200 page match program for $1 which was highly educational as it was revealed that Denzel Washington and that guy from M.A.S.H were former students as well as all of the meanings behind the referee signals.

Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

 

I had a look around at what was on offer for alumni and fans alike and found a photo opportunity for fans with a Ram’s player cut out, decent affordable food offerings and special game day promotions like ‘Deal of the Day’ on merchandise.

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Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

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The astro turf pitch looked pristine as dark clouds came and went over the stadium as the fans piled in. I grabbed a hot pretzel for $3 and while I felt like a cold beer was soon made aware that beers are not sold at these college football games.

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The national anthem had everyone up and with their hats off the crowd belted out the lyrics. Listen to the national anthem at Fordham Rams here:

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Fordham Rams Bronx

The youthful cheer squad got the crowd pumped up before the game kicked off. Hear the cheer squad here.

What was interesting about this game was the fact that it appeared that the Ram’s DJ really liked Kanye West as no less than 6 West songs or snippets were played at the Jack Coffey field over the course of the day.

Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

While walking up the aluminium stands to my spot reminded me of the Brisbane Bronco’s ANZ Stadium back in the early 90’s this was a really unique sporting experience. Family and friends were out in force cheering on their sons and brothers and the match program was also interesting to read as it came with another 100 odd page American football magazine.

Fordham Rams Bronx

Fordham Rams Bronx

While the Fordham Ram’s seventh game in their 116th season was a great game that probably had around 3-5000 people it’s nowhere near the level of the Buckeyes who I attended last year, however this was a really fun, memorable and interesting fan experience and I would encourage any sports fans or those in the business to come out here and experience it for yourself.

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audioBoom and the AFL Grand Final

 

#AFLGF 2015

#AFLGF 2015

This week sees the biggest clash on the AFL calendar with the Hawthorn Hawks up against the West Coast Eagles at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in the 2015 AFL Grand Final.

At audioBoom we’re working across our content partners, the AFL and the teams to help them record, upload and share with fans as much great quality audio content on the big game as we can.

Our content partners like SEN, RSN, UBET, 3AW and others along with a multitude of our AFL specific podcasters are posting some great content which you can listen to below.

Each day this week, my colleague and I have been posting a daily wrap up of all of that day’s AFL Grand Final content which can be found here:

Monday 28/9

Tuesday 29/9

  Wednesday 30/9

Thursday 1/10

Friday 2/10

The West Coast Eagles who use us are also posting content throughout the week. Their channel can be found here:

On Saturday we’ll be posting content all day long on @audioBoomANZ and @audioBoomSports ahead of the massive clash at 2pm.

If you’re an AFL fan you’ll no doubt enjoy this audio content and if you’re keen to use audioBoom for free and monetise your content then touch base with me and I’ll help you get set up.

All that’s left to ask is who you’re tipping? Eagles or Hawks?

Thanks for reading.

How Podcast’s Are Engaging AFL Fans

Within my role managing the Australian operations of audioBoom I’m always searching for creative ways to help sport’s teams engage with their fans through our social sound platform.

We’ve worked with the Gold Coast Suns AFL team to find the ‘Voice of the Suns’ while the UK team worked with the NFL Jacksonville Jags to feature messages of support from fans in the locker room prior to the team running out on to the Wembley Stadium field.


I’ve also previously put together this handy ideas sheet for audio fan engagement by using audioBoom which many major and grassroots clubs that use our free platform have found useful in terms of adding to the fan experience.

However there is one type of audio on our platform which is greatly resonating with sports fans and that’s in the form of short form audio podcasts.

The recent 2015 Internet Radio Trends Report highlighted that user growth is rising rapidly for podcasting with time spent listening online displacing traditional audio which in turn is leading to revenue growth from advertising. Moreover consumer behaviours are changing with a large shift to mobile listening amongst all demographics but with a skew towards tomorrow’s audience of Milennials. All of this bodes well for sporting teams looking to use audio such as podcasts to provide further content for their fans.

Many of the AFL or Aussie Rules teams on audioBoom produce weekly podcasts for their fans and are having huge listens on their 20-40 minute podcasts.

Here are a selection of AFL teams who are engaging fans on a weekly basis with their podcasts that feature fan questions, interviews with players and coaches as well as a discussion of the big issues in the game.

If your team or organisation is interested in looking into audio fan engagement then let’s talk about what audioBoom can do for your fans.

Carlton Blues- Two Tones

Essendon Bombers- Lloyd’s Lowdown

Adelaide Crows- People’s Podcast

Sydney Swans- SwanCast

Geelong Cats- PodCats

 

2015 Australian F1 Grand Prix Fan Engagement Review

‘”Red Bull threatens Formula 1 boycott”, “Formula 1’s glaring issues exposed at Australian Grand Prix” “Ricciardo sorry for fans after boring F1”

 

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

24 hours after the opening race of the F1 season and the knives are out for drastic changes to be made to not only level the racing field but also to further engage fans. Formula One Management are feeling the heat off the track from motorsport fans, F1 drivers and bosses as well as sports business commentators who have long argued that fan engagement in F1 has been lacking for far too long. However, as will be seen in this quick review, the 2015 Australian Grand Prix delivers a world-class best practice experience for every person that attends the event.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

In a day and age where sporting organisations are doing everything they can to establish fans loyalty with baby memberships available as soon as they leave their mother’s wombs, F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone out of touch comments on fan engagement in June 2014 I don’t know why people want to get to the so-called ‘young generation’. Why do they want to do that? Is it to sell them something? Most of these kids haven’t got any money’ reveal the problem with where the F1 is with fan engagement.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

This kind of outlook that the sport does not need young fans shows an appalling lack of understanding of the audience of F1 fans and what they want from the sporting experience. However that comment is not the least worrying for motorsport aficionados as Eccclestone has gone further on to state in early March 2015 that he’s not alarmed by declining television audiences and that social media is a fad that he sees no value in having stated “I’m not interested in tweeting, Facebook and whatever this nonsense is, I’m too old-fashioned. I couldn’t see any value in it.” However that being said, in the past week the F1 has finally set up a YouTube channel and perhaps this is a sign that they are looking to embrace social media more in 2015 having learnt more about how younger fans are consuming the F1.

It seems that even team owners are pulling their hair out in regards to trying to win back fans as in the past fortnight during pre-season testing Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene has called out Ecclestone as well over fan engagement to the point where he took himself, the reserve driver and the sporting director into the stands to work and sit with fans. Now that is fan engagement!

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

However it’s not all doom and gloom for F1 fan engagement. Far from that in fact as having just returned from the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne I have to congratulate the Australian Grand Prix Corporation on a truly world class fan experience that was the 2015 Australian Grand Prix.

The anticipation starts building from the moment you catch the free trams from Melbourne CBD down St Kilda Road to the Albert Park racecourse. After a short 10 minute walk from a tram stop and over a bridge with fans decked out in F1 team sponsored gear you make your way to the entrance where you’re greeted with free copies of Sunday’s newspaper and free #CMONDAN Daniel Riccardio cards to wave while you’re in the circuit. I was also able to pick up more freebies in the way of a lanyard, AUSGP map, can of RedBull and even sunscreen. You’d be crazy to do a gym sesh before hitting up the Grand Prix such is the amount of walking from fan zone to fan zone that can be achieved with myself clocking in at 7.4km of walking between each of the five fan areas throughout the day.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

This event is right up there with what best practice for fan engagement at a major event looks like with entertainment coming at you from every angle both off and on the track across the whole day and as a result of that, I’ll split this review up into two sections to cover each of these.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

Off the Track

There truly are activations galore for fans with simple cost effective things like face painting, photo boards where fans can stick their head through and be a grid girl or their F1 hero all the way through to free race track simulators. It’s also just great to see how fans were so well catered for with basic things like free sunscreen, ATM’s and free phone charging stations all abundantly placed around the circuit.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

 

There are five massive fan zones included in the general admission ticket price that include;

  • Legends Lane with motorsport nostalgia like classic cars and the industry and innovation Precinct that featured heaps of educational motoring displays and student workshops
  • V8 Village devoted to the V8 Supercars with huge merch tents, autograph areas, giveaway tents and panel discussion stages
  • Action Zone with live bands, segway and pit stop challenges, Panna football cages, Australian Defence Force vehicle exhibitions, motocross action stunts, kids dirt-bike rides and an aerosol art display
  • F1 Central with access to stand right in the action behind the V8 teams in the pit and take part in the other sponsor challenges.
  • Kids Corner, which is decked out with a Porsche kids driving school and Disney attractions
2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

All of these areas featured multiple catering options with healthy choices in mind as well as tables, umbrellas for sun protection, bean bags and large LED screens to take in the race if you didn’t have a grandstand ticket or didn’t want to find a spot along the outside of the track as these areas do tend to fill up fast.

Along with these entertainment zones, fans also had the option of upgrading their existing ticket for around $60 to enter the James Boags Premium Fan Zone which featured better access to the grid, bean bag seating, bars and even a shipping container rooftop bar which afforded an elevated viewing deck to watch the race from.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

On the Track

If the activities off the track don’t represent enough value for fans already then what takes place on the track will certainly leave no one complaining. While some F1 meets only have one or two races throughout the day, the Australian Grand Prix has a total of seven races on as soon as gates open until the first Grand Prix race of the season at 4pm. Throughout the whole day and these seven races there is only between 5 and 15 minutes when there is not a car on the track between races like the Porsche Carrera Cup, V8 Supercars and Heritage Touring cars which are constantly showcasing something exciting for fans to engage with. The Ultimate Speed Comparison test where they give a normal car a head start over a V8 Supercar, which also gets a head start over a F1 car as they all race for one lap, was also pretty fun to watch, especially as they hit the home straight.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

Along with the races, there is the RAAF aerial displays which take place over the track and include the famous Roulettes, FA-18 jet flyover with its epic booming sounds and the incredible scenes as a Qantas 747 jetliner floats ever so close over the circuit.

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

2015 AUS F1 Grand Prix

As the day draws to a close and Lewis Hamilton does his victory lap, fans get one last bang for their buck at the Australian Grand Prix by getting to walk the length of the track and have their picture taken under the famous ‘Melbourne, Australia’ sign. Watching the fans eagerly line up behind the fences and then race to the starting line is a hilarious sight but it’s also just such ultimate fan engagement to be able to stand on the track that these amazing machines were just racing on. It’s also fascinating to watch as racing enthusiasts pick up scraps of tyres and debris off the track to take home as a memorable souvenir. What made the day even more spectacular and something that no one saw coming was then watching Arnold Schwarnegger taking charge of the post match presentations and interviews on the podium and as it was revealed later his payment fee for this was just a few hamburgers and some water!

Throughout the day I counted 73 different things which I engaged with at the AUSGP and I have no doubt that there were many activations that I was unable to get to just due to not wanting to miss the start of the race. Motorsport is not everyone’s cup of tea however the Australian Grand Prix is a brilliant example of fan engagement at it’s best and should be applauded for creating an unrivalled fan experience for both the casual and hard-core fan.

 

An Australasian Perspective: Fan Engagement Down Under 2014 Review

2014 Australian Fan Engagement Review

2014 Australian Fan Engagement Review

Fan engagement activations from sporting clubs and stadiums are taking the US and UK by storm but are also becoming ever more creative and exciting down in the Southern Hemisphere in Australia and New Zealand. Fans young and old are enjoying the experience of being able to watch the game on the field but also engage with the same game on their second screen and in turn fan loyalty is being rewarded with extra incentives like seat upgrades, prizes and digital media activations coming to fans from every angle. Subsequently there are impressive fan engagement lessons to be learnt from Aussie Rules to rugby league and netball to football from what is taking place in the world of fan engagement down under.

Pie Beacon at MCG

Pie Beacon at MCG

 

It’s clear from my experience travelling the length and breadth of the country in 2014 that every sporting team and stadium in Australia and New Zealand are doing very impressive fan engagement initiatives for their supporters and have the interests of these fans right at heart as they know that this will lead to creating the ultimate spectator experience as well as get more people through the turnstiles. From the gluten free food stand at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium and Melbourne and the MCG’s immense selection of food outlets and use of iBeacon technology to Sydney’s connected free WI-FI at ANZ Stadium and Adelaide Oval’s state of the art audio and visual experience it is clear that our stadiums down here are working hard to give fans more bang for their buck and more valuable lasting memories.

 

SlideLiner at ANZ Stadium

SlideLiner at ANZ Stadium

Within my role with audioBoom I’ve been lucky enough to travel frequently around Australia and New Zealand in 2014 talking to sporting teams and stadiums about how they can use our audio platform for their fan engagement strategies. As I’m passionate about being a sports fan but also in learning what these teams and stadiums are doing with fan engagement for their supporters, I’m also very enthusiastic in promoting and showcasing the exciting things that the talented digital, marketing and fan engagement reps are doing down under for their club or stadiums fans.

2014 has been a huge year for fan engagement activations around Australia and I’ve been lucky enough to take in around 80 events here across football, AFL, rugby league, cricket, rugby, netball, hockey, motor racing as well as major events like the fan engagement overload that was both the MLB Opening Series in Sydney and the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.

AUS GP Melbourne

AUS GP Melbourne

As a way of shining a light on how well I think Australia and NZ are doing in the fan engagement ranks I have listed a selection of some of the best fan engagement activations that I was able to witness in 2014. There are probably a thousand other ideas from clubs and stadiums far and wide however that are equally as good, however these are just some of the best ones from examples that I was able to witness on my travels.

In March I attended both the Australian Grand Prix Formula One in Melbourne and the Opening Game of the MLB series in Sydney at the SCG. The AUS GP is a fan engagement mecca with a multitude of activations on offer for fans from the #AUSGP twitter hashtag stand for fan photos, classic car roadshow, free Daniel Riccardio face masks, live music on festival type stages, fan zone bars with public access, free kids face painting and action zones featuring race car simulators.  At the Major League Baseball opening game at Sydney’s Cricket Ground the sheer scale of what the event organisers Moore Sports pulled off with this event from securing the correct dirt for the pitching mound to make the stadium look like an American baseball ground was incredible to witness. However it was also all of the fun fan engagement on offer for baseball fans that really was impressive and definitely enhanced the day out at the ground. Outside the ground there were photo opportunities with the MLB trophy, batting cages and pitching zones to merch tents with free giveaways. Once inside the ground there were special zones set up including the ESPN Fan Deck, which featured free merch for fans like inflatable ESPN foam hands and customized beer holder cups. The event also provided a smorgasbord of American food varieties including giant 60cm hot dogs, bacon on a stick and ice cream in baseball helmets, which definitely had fans excited.

ESPN Freebies at the SCG

ESPN Freebies at the SCG

MLB at the SCG

MLB at the SCG

The National Rugby League (NRL) had an impressive year with fan engagement activations from the Brisbane Broncos and Manly Sea Eagles giving away free flags to fans at games, to Allianz Stadium and the Kangaroos test match rewarding fans with a ‘Seat and Eat’ offer where fans could eat as much as they could during the game. The Newcastle Knights teamed up with SportsBet to feature fans twitter names on the back of their jerseys while the NSW State of Origin rugby league team changed the sponsor words of beer Victoria Bitter on the front of their jerseys to feature fans names. The North Queensland Cowboys gave out free cut out headgear masks of star player Johnathon Thurston to fans while the Broncos also developed an away day cinema room for fans at their club house and gave out a prize to all members at their final home game through a lucky dip bin. The Penrith Panthers had a novel idea by letting fans buy cheaper jerseys if they traded in their old ones which then went to a worthy charity and the Melbourne Storm held a 31 day Instagram challenge which encouraged fans to tag a photo and follow a new theme like try celebration or tickets for example. Five NRL teams also engaged fans by donning special super hero jerseys featuring Wolverine, Captain America and more that were sold to fans and worn during games.

Seat and Eat at Allianz Stadium

Seat and Eat at Allianz Stadium

Newcastle Knights

Newcastle Knights

Broncos members lucky dip

Broncos members lucky dip

Storm Instagram Challenge

Storm Instagram Challenge

 

The Australian Football League (AFL) also rolled out the fan engagement royalty for fans with the Hawthorn Hawks having a fan guard of honour and Port Adelaide Power continuing to build on their theme song by getting fans to sing the INXS classic ‘Never Tear Us Apart’  in unison at home games. The Brisbane Lions and Gold Coast Suns also had two of the best fan zones I witnessed on my travels in 2014 with Brisbane’s ‘Lions Park’ having skills and drills activities and photo stands whereas the Suns featured a live music area called the Fifth Quarter and loads of fan incentives like seat upgrades and food offers as well as allowing members to present players with their jerseys at the fan day. The Sydney Swans offered fans a 2 for 1 ‘Bring a Buddy’ deal to home games as a smart marketing tie in with their star player Buddy Franklin. Many teams emblazoned their jerseys with their members names while the Western Bulldogs and Melbourne Demons featured a women’s exhibition game before a main game and the Richmond Tigers used a photo-tagging platform to enable fans to tag their location at the match. Carlton Blues also used audioBoom to record player biographies, which were then linked to QR codes that were placed around their headquarters so that fans could tour the ground and learn and engage with the history of the club. The home of AFL, the Melbourne Cricket Ground also featured new iBeacon technology which saw roving meat pie sellers fitted with “iBeacons’’ that send messages via Bluetooth technology to supporter’s smart phones as they move around the stadium. Fans who have downloaded the MCG app have a message telling them a pie boy is nearby and are then handed a free Four’N Twenty meat pie when they show their mobile notification message. The MCG also encourages fans to ‘tweet the crowd’ whereby the fan that is closest to the correct crowd figure wins a special rewards. As can be seen from these examples in fan engagement, the AFL and its teams are enhancing the spectator experience of fans.

Gold Coast Suns

Gold Coast Suns

Australia’s domestic football competition, the A-League also featured many diverse fan engagement activations which included giveaways like free shoelaces for fans, digital activations like trivia at the A-League All Stars game and double header matches featuring the women’s teams playing before the men’s at plenty of stadiums around the country which was a good way to build support and engagement with the women’s game in Australia.

The Football United tour of New Zealand featuring West Ham and Newcastle United at Wellington’s Westpac Stadium showcased a tantalizing range of food and beverages at their newly opened fans public bar that would rival some of the member’s bars at stadiums around the world. The Football United App and use of TagBoard at the ground were also good digital activations in Wellington that got fans engaging on their second screens at the double-header match.

Football United Tour of NZ

Football United Tour of NZ

Perth Glory utilized QR codes to have fans vote for their man of the match while the Western Sydney Wanderers encouraged fans to share the footage they record at games to the teams Instagram and Twitter accounts as a way of bringing fans closer to the club. Brisbane Roar held a group fitness day for fans and the Central Coast Mariners constructed a beach bar at one end of their ground where fans could swim behind the goals and take in quality food and drinks all while the main game was taking place. The Mariners also held a Superhero Saturday, which encouraged fans to dress up as their favourite superhero on game day. The Australian national team, The Socceroo’s teamed up with Twitter to show their appreciation to fans with a personalized and signed team photo in the lead up to the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The Socceroo’s also published a ‘leave pass’ for fans to give to their bosses in the hope of getting off work early to see the team play some of their games in 2014.

Mariners beach bar

Mariners beach bar

Perth Glory

Perth Glory

 

Socceroos Leave Pass

Socceroos Leave Pass

 

But it’s not just the AFL and NRL leading the way with the Australian Rugby Union using the innovative experience of the SlideLiner at both ANZ Stadium and Suncorp Stadium. The SlideLiner was a four-person fan bench structure that sat on an 80-metre track near the pitch and moved along the field, following the game as it happened. The SlideLiner was equipped with Samsung technology so fans can share images through social media. The Queensland Reds Super Rugby team also featured personalied player mascots and enrolled the services of a cute red heeler puppy which were both a big hit with fans young and old. The National Rugby Championship (NRC) competition also featured match day programs,which could be downloaded via QR code direct to fans phones or tablets.

NRC Rugby QR Code program

NRC Rugby QR Code program

The SlideLiner

The SlideLiner

QLD Reds mascots

QLD Reds mascots

 

The Australian Baseball League (ABL) also offered fans some very appealing activities with the Brisbane Bandits and Melbourne Aces leading the way. The Aces have set up a dedicated fan zone at their stadium while the Bandits have incorporated food trucks on game nights as well as all you can eat incentives for fans. Another interesting activation by the Bandits was their speed dating ‘singles’ night which could possibly now give Tinder a run for its money for single sports fans to meet that special someone over an authentic ballpark hot dog!

The ANZ Netball Championship also saw plenty of exciting fan engagement with free giveaways at games but one of the more impressive things I noticed was the free healthy and nutritious raw food recipes being published by the Queensland Firebirds team which was certainly a refreshing thing to see in terms of healthy living education. Hockey Australia also engaged fans with their #12daysofhockey campaign which was run across the Hockey Australia, Hockeyroos and Kookaburras social media channels, website and digital platforms and saw fans engage with the national teams via platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and audioBoom in order to win prizes.

Netball Fan Engagement

Netball Fan Engagement

12 Days of Hockey Fan Engagement

12 Days of Hockey Fan Engagement

 

Fan engagement is on the rise in Australia and New Zealand with teams and stadiums constantly looking to improve the match day experience for fans. This review has only touched the surface of all the impressive activations that are taking place down here however there are many valuable and creative fan engagement ideas which can be learned from what the hard working club and stadium sports business marketing and digital media reps are doing to get fans back into the stadium and create these lifelong memories for sporting fans.

 

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