WEBINAR RECAP: Understanding Fans Through Data & Analytics


Nov 19, 2019


We recently hosted a webinar with Front Office Sports featuring our CEO Vincent Ircandia, Kevin Kinghorn, VP Marketing for Canucks Sports & Entertainment, and Kris Knief, VP Business Intelligence for the Vegas Golden Knights, to discuss how sports organizations are using data to better understand their fans.

What fan data is of value to a sports organization and how is it used to better understand your fan base?

Sports fans interact with organizations in a multitude of ways producing vast amounts of data that can become siloed or stale in source systems across departments. Creating a single customer view allows both organizations to create baselines and then focus on improvement efforts from there.

The Vancouver Canucks have traditionally used season ticket member surveys to understand the value that fans place on their membership and insight into the reasons behind becoming a season ticket member. he organization uses that survey feedback to bucket their fans based on predetermined segments while creating a baseline for marketing efforts throughout the season. Surveys aren’t limited to season ticket members, individual ticket buyers are also surveyed to determine brand health and provide additional opportunities to engage with them. Creating that single customer view in the StellarAlgo CDP has allowed the Canucks to innovate from a product and experience standpoint and how best to nurture that relationship.

For the Vegas Golden Knights, data collection and consolidation efforts are meant to create a baseline understanding of their fans across all consumer segments. The demographic, psychographic and behavioral data elements presented through the StellarAlgo CDP help the organization create targeted strategies and personalization. As Knief put it, “No two fans are alike, everybody wants a different message, and product mix.” That kind of personalization wouldn’t be available at scale without the use of automation and predictive insights.

How do you begin to sort through and organize all that data you collect?

A top priority for both of these organizations when it comes to how they choose to prioritize certain data items is to first determine what questions they are trying to answer. With varying types of data available to an organization, determining which types of data to focus on can be a challenge. From anonymous to the more personally identifiable data that fans provide to an organization, the general types of data that we see a lot are economic,  behavioral , demographic and interest data. All of this data combines to show how your fans naturally segment and which attributes various groups have in common, which can inform marketing strategy and pacing for package renewals and identify those fans who routinely purchase last minute for an upcoming event.

When it comes to renewals, the Canucks focus on the ‘why’ in order to get the right message in front of the right fan. As an example, Kinghorn mentioned that the team was able to identify corporate ticket members who were inclined to attend their charity golf tournament and valued the opportunity to interact one-on-one with their players. By offering this type of experience to them, that segment of corporate ticket members renewed 9% higher than before they personalized that offer to them.

How do teams determine what to build versus what to buy when it comes to their tech stack?

For sports and entertainment organizations it is paramount to understand where resources are utilized most effectively. With lean staff sizes and limited time to execute strategy, understanding when it’s best to spend budget on external resources and when to spend on building systems is extremely important. Both the Canucks and Golden Knights suggest that having a partner to de-risk the technical work and help them predict fan behavior, which allows their teams to quickly action on their data has proven successful.

As sports and entertainment organizations look to focus on the benefits of automation and predictive insights in order to better understand their fans, they are turning to tools like customer data platforms to offer the robust analytics and insights they need.

Have a question you’d like answered about how a customer data platform can help your team? Connect with us to learn more!

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