Potential KPIs for Sports Orgs

In Sports Media on July 15, 2013 at 1:53 pm

While social can serve as an important reinforcer for sports teams, allowing fans to crave that constant in-the-know feeling while feeling satisfied and connected to their favorite sports stars, it also has the potential to be measured as conversions to sales. Social can be used to push sales not only to tickets to games and merchandise but also sales in an arena or stadium, maximizing the profitability of a game day.

Social scheming in the moment 

Business Insider published this graph last week depicting which social sites are generating revenue:

The graph shows, not unexpectedly, that the largest amount of referrals are coming from Facebook and Twitter. However, e-mail’s share in all this seems to be going down. Just a couple of years ago, and judging by the number of daily emails I get from businesses for many even still, email remained a monstrous push for sales conversation. Twenty-four hour only sales or e-mail coupons worked to drive in revenue and get customers to the page. But I feel as though many people have become just a numb to this as flyers in the mail or telemarketing. While all of the aforementioned forms of marketing still have their value and can absolutely become a push for sales, I think social has a unique opportunity in today’s world, especially in sports and live events.

Applying it to in-game content creation and analytics

Considering this opportunity, there are a number of potential key performance indicators that I think teams could create and measure to see how influential their social channels are and to use them in improving profitability. As always, successful KPIs will absolutely change for each organization based on their needs and specialities, but here are a few scenarios I’ve been thinking it might be cool to watch play out.

  1. Foursquare concession coupons: Whether with a check-in special or a Tweet, prepare a special for say, a free hot dog with a drink purchase. The customer will need to show the coupon or tweet at POS in order to gain the free item. The tracking can then be done in the register system (if its sophisticated to know how many free hot dogs were given away) or by creating some sort of social redemption pull like providing a hashtag to show your free hot dog off. A hashtag like #freehotdogadventures or something more situationally specific can show you enthusiasm for such a campaign and will also help you identify which types of fans are engaging with your content so that you can tailor your next special to their interests and gain even more social traction. When it’s all said and done, your KPI here will be how many free hot dogs redeemed. This can turn into some sort of sponsored content and also give you a gauge of how many people, if any, are checking in and wanting a next step. This can help you decide if its something worth pushing in the future.
  2. Ticket Sales: An obvious KPI is a conversation from a social link to tickets sold. I think the best way to measure this would be to choose one outlet and find a way to distinctly control the sales funnel through basic marketing principles such as attention, interest, desire, action. This could look like this for a team: attention– start with content, a instagram video, a simple twitter image, something with analytical tracking attached to it. interest– Maybe it’s a promo for a big game coming up or big rivalry that hasn’t been sold out yet, use statistics or even an emotional pull in efforts to convince a potential customer that it’s THIS specific game they need to come to. Desire may or may not be created in the steps above, but likely, desire will come inherently from fandom. Lastly action, which can be the most difficult part, but needs to be the most measured part. Devise a system unique to your situation that tests social networks and can have solid data on which attempts are being converted into sales and which should stick to different types of content.

Additional Looks

A classmate of mine at Newhouse created a slideshare presentation for a class getting into her ideas about sports and the sales funnel including looks at relationship building.


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