The sports industry has now become a great arena for the rivalry of a growing number of players, many of whom come to the sport from sectors not always at first glance associated with it.
Such technological giants like Amazon or Facebook, have started to invest in the sport just over a year ago, but have the potential to become serious competitors in the TV market. In 2017, Amazon spent about $4.4 billion for the production of video content for its own streaming platform, Amazon Video, and now with Disney discussing the possibility of buying 22 channels with sports broadcasts, with an estimated cost of about $29 billion, a logical question Arises: why would an online retailer to invest in video content? The answer is simple: subscribers to video streaming, not only pay-per-view content, but also subscribe to Amazon Prime — own Amazon loyalty program, in which they spend on purchase of goods is two times more than those who do not use the system. This monetization model when working with exclusive sports content brings Amazon extra income.
Among other interesting players — Twitter, for which sports content has become an important part of the strategy, and Dazn — streaming service, which just last year created about eight thousand units of sports content. Do not forget about the “dark horse”: YouTube and Apple TV. The first has exclusive rights to broadcast several matches the team’s MLS (Major League Soccer, USA). Apple also announced that it would invest a billion dollars in its own streaming service, which has all chances to become successful in the sports market.
No business, especially sports, today, can not exist at the level of feelings or individual perception of what should work. Voice assistants, virtual and augmented reality, chat-bots have turned the world upside down. But this technology can’t develop without the collection and segmentation of data to build a strategy activations and to consider individual preferences of the fans. In this situation, accurate measurement becomes one of the main arguments when making decisions.
For example, Manchester City football club has placed Wi-Fi routers at the stadium and created a card with RFID (RFID), which in real time read the information on the movement of fans around the stadium and passed them in the CRM database associated with the user profile of each visitor to the match. This gave Manchester City an understanding of how to move the fans in the stadium and improved the experience of visiting the stadium: the food courts and areas for children moved to the optimal locations and 45 000 visitors were able to get to the stadium at a speed of 1200 per minute.
The most interesting challenge of the future is building relationships with consumers. Research suggests that modern man is losing the ability to concentrate. An important role was played by the development of social media, the main phenomenon of the XXI century. They completely changed the habits of users, their interests and channels of content consumption. Now the rights holders and platforms have to fight for the attention of the consumer, who is constantly distracted. This situation on the one hand creates uncertainty about the future and other opportunities.
How to find the consumer and through what channels of communication to conduct a dialogue with the companies, working at the intersection of sports and technology? An interesting answer to this question found the organizers of the campaign This Girl Can in the UK. To motivate more women to play sports and lead a healthy life, they began to cooperate with music service Spotify. First identified women, who in the past month have stopped to listen to the playlists for workouts, and then sent them advertising campaign This Girl Can. Half of those who saw the advertisement, went to the site and read the details. As a result, 59% of them have resumed training.
Model Direct to Consumer (direct to consumer) is a phenomenon in the modern market.
It allows the owners to better monetize the content, as the profit from the sale of broadcasting remains entirely with him. Independent production and streaming of content allows you to control what happens to your broadcasts, and attachments, and therefore the holder becomes better protected from risk. The most famous example — Netflix.
Model D2C allows you to collect data about fans to produce even more quality content and to build a dialogue in the most effective communication channels. The National Football League the most successful League in the world from a financial point of view — a vivid example of how the right is already distributed among the channels of communication and distribution. The right to broadcast, at a cost of 60 million dollars for the match, got TV channels Fox and CBS, where fans can watch some matches for free. NBC offers access to certain games as part of a paid subscription. Own website opens NFL fans direct access to the broadcasts. And in addition there is a separate package of rights for mobile and OTT provider Verizon Amazon, last year paid 50 million dollars for the right to broadcast.
All of this suggests that the pyramid of importance of the rights of broadcasting is likely to shift from TV to the side channels and platforms, who can give part of these rights.
Market players recognize that in the long term future of the sport lies in the commercial model. With that few dispute, despite the fact that the Russian market is a big challenge. There are several principles, shifting the meaning of which in the Russian reality, players in the sports industry can improve content quality and increase the attractiveness of the business model for consumers:
— urgency (here and now)
— personalization (on one dialogue with the consumer language and on its own merits)
— interpretation (available for perception data)
— authenticity (the importance of the authenticity of the history)
— availability (1-2 clicks lead to a result, no 15-minute registrations)
— materialization (physical package in the history of the works better than something ephemeral)
— patronage (involvement in the process, a vivid example Kickstarter)
— opening (for information, available immediately, willing to pay)
Technology and consumer habits have become major engines of change in the sports industry.
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