This is an unpopular topic so I almost don’t want to broach it… but I will (and I’m prepared for the backlash so bring it on).
This month, we watched the Super Bowl (at least, you all did – I was stuck at my old job training my replacement so I had to settle for updating the NFL website whenever she was writing notes or in the bathroom). And after the game a NUMBER of people, both that I know personally and who are total strangers, commented on the half-time show and how US sporting experiences compare to Australian sporting experiences. While many of the comments contained expletives, I will use the nicest one here. They called it “humbling.”
As I have said before, Australian sports can never be and should never be American sports. But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t room for innovation. Continue Reading
Ah, variable pricing. The never-ending possibilities. Let’s talk about it.
Variable pricing is when prices change based on a region, location, date or other aspects. This is also known as ‘real-time pricing.’
I find it miraculous that teams brag about not changing their ticket prices. When they do this, they’re trying to convince the public that they are trying to make attendance affordable for everyone. Anyone who has been to a game knows that’s not true – the price of food is ABSURD (and we all know that even Andrew Demetriou thinks so).
The point I’m making is: if you’re trying to make it affordable… why don’t you try lowering your ticket prices?
Lots of professional sports leagues, teams and sponsors try to involve children in events in the hopes that they’ll become fans who will support the club for the rest of their life. Not only are they hoping the kids will be fans, but in a perfect world, their parents will become fans (otherwise, who will buy the tickets?) and, by extension, the rest of the family. They do this through a variety of avenues: visits to local schools, workshops with clubs, Aus Kick in the case of the AFL, volunteering with child-focused charities such as Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and sponsorship activation on game days like bounce houses and face painting and temporary tattoos. Great idea, guys. Good work.
But here’s my question: what happens when these kids grow up?
Do you know what I want? A place where I can go to watch GWS or Swans games with other GWS or Swans fans. Yes, it’s Sydney, but that doesn’t mean I know very many GWS and Swans fans. And if I get my way and end up in Melbourne in a few years (working for the AFL, of course) I’m going to know even fewer GWS and Swans fans. There are a few bars that say they play all the Swans games but should be easier than it is to find them (if anyone wants to know, Dick’s in Balmain is my new favourite place to watch games – can’t wait until the season starts again). Even harder is finding other NBL and ABL fans. Other than the people I know who work for NBL and ABL teams and leagues, I don’t know very many people who are keen to watch the game. So why not partner with a venue? Since it’s Australia, it should probably be a bar (have you ever told Aussies they can’t drink while watching sport? Yea – you probably don’t want to) although you’d want to have an alternate venue for families… more on that later. Continue Reading
Let’s get one thing straight here: no matter what happens, the sports business in Australia will never be the same as the sports business in the US. It’s just not going to happen.
Now I know that some people like to talk about the Americanisation of sport in Australia and yes, there are things Australian sporting codes are adopting because they have worked so well in the US such as salary caps, the reverse order draft, and free agency. The primary reason for this is because the leagues want to make a better game. Better games mean more fans and more fans mean more money. EVERYTHING is [nearly] ALWAYS about money. But is it working well? Eh. Not in my opinion.
I really wanted this post to go up on Monday so I could tag it as Marketing Mondays. But, alas, Monday was the day after Australia Day and, if we’re all being honest… you weren’t up to reading the day after Australia Day, were you? Tsk tsk. For shame.
We’re going to keep this one relatively easy. Because I don’t think a lot of execs know this (particularly Australian ones – but let’s not be discriminatory). This is a list. A list of what sports fans wants. And, as per usual, we’ll talk about this more in the coming weeks (or months, you know, this blog is pretty fluid).