Does supporter data really matter?
Think of the countless data points that are attributed to professional sportsmen/women in the modern era of sport. Distance ran, speed, goals/try’s, assists, minutes played, heat maps, power of kicks, throws or lifts. The data points are endless, aimed at getting the very best out of each and every player. And it works! Managers will never ask for less information about a player, the data enables them to make informed tactical decisions therefore producing better performances on the pitch.
In the same way player data enables informed tactical decisions, understanding supporter data goes a long way to enabling successful tactical marketing decisions. Supporters in the modern marketing era are being communicated with on a 1 to 1, personalised way on a daily basis with a range of retailers, food chains and a variety of other sectors all offering them rewards for their ‘loyalty’. But for the one sector they are truly passionate about they are being taken for granted, driven by the assumption, correct in some aspects, that they are loyal until the death and will always spend their money with the clubs they love.
Supporters love to feel part of their club; they are emotionally and financially invested in the club right to the very core. Does that therefore mean they should not be communicated with in the same personalised way retailers are. Whilst retail not only personalise the communications they also need to give away margin in the form of offers to entice additional revenue from their ‘valued customers’, football clubs are in the unique and envious position of being able to reward purchases, loyalty and extra revenue not by further discounts but by ‘money can’t buy experiences’.
By taking all the data points belonging to a supporter; membership type, average match spend, merchandise purchases, away game sales, miles travelled, games attended, time attended and much more, we can then split the supporter base into segments where communication is personalised to how they engage with the club. Using those data points we can also begin to reward fans in unique ways, for example using drive time tools we can say supporter x travelled x amount of miles over the last month, the club could then reward them by allowing them to travel on the team bus for the next game. A money can’t buy experience for that supporter and ensure their dedicated support is continued. This is just one example of a fantastic marketing opportunity taken from three sets of data Customer, Ticketing and Address data.
Supporter data therefore more than ever is crucial to the success of the clubs marketing teams, an ability to tap into that wealth of data will unlock opportunities to take engagement to the next level
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