26 October 2021
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, the past 19 months have transformed the sport and entertainment industry. There is a silver lining though, the relationship between sports and technology have skyrocketed, and EngageRM are here to help you make the most out of this change.
Our CEO, Ned Coten, says, “the whole world of sport has changed considerably; leagues and organizations are playing in empty venues”. He notes that “fans have to be engaged in different ways, and what our platform focuses on is how we can bring fans and teams together to help those organizations”.
“EngageRM is focused on that fan engagement to build systems and processes that help organizations gather data and information to achieve those outcomes effectively,” Coten says.
The pandemic sped up this process. Partnerships and sponsorships were under pressure with no fans in stadiums; they were under pressure, and solutions needed to be found under these new circumstances. “We understand these challenges, the pandemic forced teams to evaluate their business model, and our platform was ready to address those changes and adapt to the situation,” Coten says.
“Through Microsoft Teams, we could host events such as Q&As with the coach or players before a game, which was always possible, but were never used until fans were stuck home,” he notes. “What I think will happen is that once fans go back to the stadiums, these experiences and the screen first mentality are here to stay so all fans can join in on game day,” says Coten.
As we all know, the sports industry is slowly getting back on its feet and adjusting to the new normal. Still, Coten believes the industry should focus on grassroots organizations rather than those at the top. “2020 showed us that elite sport can be played without fans, but what does the future look like for kids and their clubs and associations?
“How can these clubs give these kids the information they need to train when they have to stay home? This is where technology comes into play,” Coten says. “One of the things that will be critical is identity management, having excellent insight on where kids are going to ensure that they’re in the right environment in the right way and just keeping track of all that information.”
“This is all about that emotional connection which all leagues and teams, including those grassroots organizations, have with their fans and participants,” he says. “We have to accept that sport and competition won’t be back to the way it was, but if we work to maintain those emotional connections, then these organizations will thrive.”
Innovation is the hallmark of this next step for the sports and entertainment industry as organizations contemplate how they can reach their fans. “Having this technology is a ticket to the game, but just having it won’t set you apart from your competitors,” Coten says. “This is where a robust CRM system will set you apart from the rest; it will capture all the data and information for your organization which can boost your outcomes.
“There’s no question that the future of most industries, sport especially, will be driven by the way technology works, and there are many ways that don’t cost much or any money,” Coten says. “You don’t have to understand every detail of it; you just have to understand what it can do for you and your organization.”
For those still on the fence, Coten’s advice is this, “learn about the relevant technology, whether it be on the field of play or in the front office, finance, marketing or anywhere else, separate yourself by really understanding it,” he says.
“That’s critical going forward, technology is here to stay, and hopefully, we can get back to what we love really soon.”