Like many fans, sports moments are etched in my memories. Larry Johnson’s four-point play. David Tyree in Super Bowl XLII. And of course, other more disappointing moments associated with being a New York sports fan (there are many).
Despite the inevitable ups and downs, there is no doubt that I’m part of the 84% of avid fans who now have a greater appreciation for live sporting events after the pandemic put a pause on the industry.
Like everything else in our lives, the sports industry has been forced to adapt in this new environment and with it, the notion of how we are connecting to our favorite teams, leagues and athletes. While there has been debate about recent viewership numbers, 87% of Americans still identify as being a sports fan, meaning there’s still a large consumer base to reach.
As someone who has been fortunate to work in sports in addition to being a fan, I think the challenge of reaching existing and new consumers has never been more unique. Here are three observations:
Amping Up the At-Home Experience
Brands have focused on enhancing the at-home fan experience even further given social distance guidelines. Pepsi launched a tailgate in a box sweepstakes to get fans excited for the NFL season. T-Mobile is mounting 5G-powered cameras on players’ and coaches’ caps during World Series batting practice while Budweiser launched clever “Rally Cans” to mark the Fall Classic.