Role of Sponsorship in Digital Fan Engagement

It is estimated that over 65 Billion dollars were spent on sponsorships worldwide in 2018. That’s a $2.5 billion increase from 2017. Furthermore, 70% of all that money went into sports. In other words, sports sponsorship is a thriving business and here is an example to prove it.

It is estimated that over 65 Billion dollars were spent on sponsorships worldwide in 2018. That’s a $2.5 billion increase from 2017. Furthermore, 70% of all that money went into sports. In other words, sports sponsorship is a thriving business and here is an example to prove it.

It is somewhat hard to consider soccer as being part of the American sports culture. Yet, interest in the sport has been steadily rising over the past few years. In fact, some 50% of US citizens said that they have at least a basic interest in the sport. The 18 to 29-year-old demographic shows the most interest in soccer, which presented an incredible opportunity for sponsors. In 2006, Red Bull bought the MetroStars, a Major League soccer team from New York. It should not come as a surprise then, that US soccer fans consume 63% more Red Bull than any other energy drinks on the market.

Soccer is the highest-grossing sport in the world and brands flock to it in an attempt at ‚Äėgetting a piece of the action.‚Äô The US soccer market is relatively new and still presents ample opportunities for a high ROI. But soccer is not the only sport in this category. Skateboarding, surfing, and snowboarding are just a few other examples of sports whose main fan base are people under the age of 30 and who present an opportunity for high sponsorship ROI. This demographic is also the one most likely to use social media as their main platform for engagement.

Engagement Platform, Sponsorship, and Sports 

Sponsorship executives agree that social media will be the road going forward. Over 80% of fans use it from home or even at the stadium. On Twitter, for example, sports-related content is the most popular type of content, and this should not come as a surprise based on the platform’s commitment to live sports streams. In short, brands and sports leagues/teams now have a wider range of platforms from which to generate revenue.

The challenge that remains, however, is to generate entertaining content so as to maximize the potential that social platforms have to offer. A lot of sports teams have digital apps of their own, but because of the wide array of social outlets out there and the diversity in content that exists; fans keep themselves updated about their favorite teams, but do it almost anywhere else except on their team’s app. The potential is there, but the delivery is still lacking in many places.

Platforms like Fanisko Engage are able to address the issue and aid sports teams and leagues retain the attention of their fan base. It does this by providing all sorts of engaging content like live play-by-play predictions, AR/VR games, engagement rewards, or personalized streaming of news and events, among others, all specially tailored to keep fans engaged on the team’s own app. Sponsored content is provided via non-intrusive videos, native ads, surveys, and several other types all powered by analytics so as to not impede fan engagement.

The video below discusses putting a financial value on digital engagement for the sponsors. 

The future of sports sponsorship is certain like John Abbamondi, vice president of the NBA‚Äôs Team Marketing & Business Operations division, said back in 2014: ‚ÄúSports is a people business, so we‚Äôre looking for ways to use technology to further engage with people.‚ÄĚ His statement has since become a mantra for teams and leagues; given the increased attention digital sponsorship is receiving just a few years later.

About Fanisko:

Fanisko (www.fanisko.com) offers a one-stop fan engagement platform, Fanisko|Engage, that helps sports and entertainment brands increase mobile fan retention, digital engagement and revenue opportunities. Today‚Äôs fans want more from their leagues and teams. We help leagues and teams embrace today‚Äôs ‚ÄúSmartFan‚ÄĚ demand while maximizing fan potential for sponsors. Our mobile first, one-stop platform targeting millennials with a combination of unique content strategy, product offering including gaming, predictive and behavioral analytics and AR/VR technologies will target and engage the right audience.

So, if you are any sports association, league or a club planning to deliver an amazing mobile based fan engagement platform to build your fanbase, we would like to hear from you.

Turning Sports Enthusiasts into Hardcore Fans

Hardcore fans, unlike simple sports enthusiasts, see themselves as part of the team and not just simple spectators in the arena. With this in mind, teams, leagues, and clubs should cater to these needs as much as possible. Luckily, however, this has become increasingly more feasible, thanks in large part to all the technological achievements in recent years.  

Hardcore fans are the lifeblood of any sports team, league, or club. These fans are the ones that live and breathe for their favorite teams and are the ones more than willing to go to every game, purchase merchandise, and follow their teams wherever they go. Not all sports teams enjoy this high level of fidelity and idolization, meaning that their bottom line has to suffer, stifling, in turn, their possibility for expansion, sponsorship acquisition, and better results, in a sort of positive feedback cycle that is incredibly hard to break.

Nevertheless, some sports teams such as FC Barcelona,¬†Real Madrid CF,¬†FC Bayern Munich, among many others, seem to be blessed with fans spanning the entire globe. So, what are these teams doing right that others aren’t?¬†And more importantly, what do fans want and expect from their favorite teams?

What Do the Hardcore Fans Really Want?

Hardcore fans, unlike simple sports enthusiasts, see themselves as part of the team and not just simple spectators in the arena. With this in mind, teams, leagues, and clubs should cater to these needs as much as possible. Luckily, however, this has become increasingly more feasible, thanks in large part to all the technological achievements in recent years.

These fans want to be in touch with their teams 24/7, if possible. And while this was somewhat hard to do, say, back in the ’90, with today’s many social media platforms, like Snapchat, Instagram, or Facebook, this is no longer a problem. Teams and individual players alike can live stream¬†from the locker room or their own homes, all to their fan base delight and satisfaction.

What Key Elements Facilitate Hardcore Sports Fans?

No person is born a hardcore fan, so, certain things must be turning them. Knowing what these are, can help teams to turn them into their loyal fans better.

For starters, and this is somewhat obvious, hardcore fans are usually from the same city. In fact, roughly 60% of all hardcore fans of any given team, especially those that hold international recognition, are from the same town or area as their team. An equally important aspect is the family tradition of rooting for a specific team. It is unlikely, though not unheard of, for children to endorse a different team than that their parents, siblings, and relatives do.

Then, there’s the matter of a team’s performance. Scientific studies have shown that fans whose team won a game see an increase in their testosterone levels. Likewise, some sports fans tend to follow individual players and not the teams themselves. It means that they are willing to change teams as long as their favorite player is part of it.

Lastly, there a matter of convenience. Today’s sports fans are all about convenience and versatility when it comes to their engagement with their teams. And as we’ve mentioned before, this trend has been facilitated, in large part by the rise of social media and other such digital technologies. The downside to this development, however, is the fact that there are too many platforms from which fans engage with their teams, which is somewhat the opposite of what convenience is about.

Conclusion

Fortunately, specific platforms such as Fanisko Engage are fixing that by funneling all this fragmented content, and more, within a single source. This is a win-win situation for everybody involved.

Fan engagement innovation: Meet CSK AR

Who doesn’t desire to look like Dhoni?
Well, The CSK AR app provides you with that. Pretty cool, right?

Even though still in its infancy, the rise and popularity of Augmented Reality (AR) is pervading into every possible industry in the world with the sports fan engagement leading the business.

While other sports like NBA, NFL has gone through countless innovations with AR, The cricket fans, especially in India, are yet to experience AR.

Though the AR apps in cricket have been around for a long time now, it wasn’t quite popular until the Melbourne Renegades, and few other Big Bash teams used them in the recently concluded Big Bash tournament.

With over 20 million followers, The Chennai Super Kings (CSK) is known for their innovations to keep the fans engaged, and they have done it once again.

The long wait for the Indian cricket fans to experience AR has come to an end. Indian cricket fans, meet the cool kid on the block ‚ÄúCSK AR App‚ÄĚ.

 

Powered by Fanisko and Binaryface, the CSK AR app uses real-time face effects, lets the fans take a selfie using five different face filters and allows them to share the pictures in social media for bragging rights.

Who doesn’t desire to look like Dhoni?
Well, The CSK AR app provides you with that. Pretty cool, right?

Fanisko has been working their hearts out to take fan engagement to the next level and is successful in solving fan engagement problems for brands and franchises with the millennial fan base. CSK AR App is an excellent example. We turn loyal fans into digital diehards.

Fanisko offers their fan engagement platform Fanisko | Engage as a backend plugin that infuses sports teams apps to engage and retain the connected millennial. Think live play-by-play predictions, AR/VR/MR games, engagement rewards, and a personalized stream of all team news and social buzz – 24/7, 365. Fanisko has further innovated to create hybrid play along fantasy platform Cricking Duels. Fanisko’s connection to CSK is not something new – in 2015, Fanisko (a/k/a Cricking) partnered with CSK for 2015 IPL season as their official Fan engagement partner.

You can download the app, CSK AR from Google Play store.