I just posted a story about Bill Marriott, a huge influence in the hospitality world. This post is about another influential person, this time from the world of sports, specifically sports marketing.
Mark Cuban, owner of the NBA Dallas Mavericks, is never shy with his opinions, and he shares them often via his personal blog. This week, he wrote about sports marketing, all stemming from an SMU basketball game he recently attended.
“Atmosphere. The electricity you feel when you walk into an arena. The uncertainty and anticipation of what will happen before, during and after the game, and most importantly the communal feelings that can only happen when thousands, if not tens of thousands of people share their emotions,” Cuban wrote. “That is what makes going to a game special and the smart people at SMU knew it.”
It’s a great post, and I suggest you read it. In the meantime, here are six items Cuban feels sports marketers can learn from an energized and emotional fan base.
1. Know where your team is in their “lifecycle.”
“It is easier to engage fans when the team is turning a corner and winning is new, but you have to work hard at selling the fun of coming to an arena. The more seats you have to sell, the harder you have to work. Fans want a reason to get out of the house and have fun.”
2. Know who your long time fans/customers are.
“Fans know when you care. You can’t fake it. It is hard work, but it has to be done. Know your customers and treat them like gold.”
3. Price to the market, not to maximize revenue.
“IMHO, it is far more important to know the price points that will enable you to fill the arena than to know the price points that will max out your total revenue. Why ? Because winning matters. It is important to have fans in the stands. They impact your winning percentage.”
4. Fans buy tickets where they like to buy them.
“The Mavs have found that some of our customers prefer to buy from a given secondary provider than from our site. They have a credit card set up there. They buy not just Mavs, but other Dallas teams, concerts and other events from a single source. That convenience, from their perspective makes it a better choice.”
5. Selling is the most important job at a team.
“At the Mavs we value customer satisfaction and sales. We want you to have an amazing time at a game. We want our advertiser/sponsors to get amazing value from their Mavs partnerships. We want to have enough great salespeople to reach out and communicate all of the above. Every team cannot have enough great salespeople.”
6. Spend money on fun.
“If you have a limited budget and the choice is between fun or anything else, choose fun every time.”
Do you agree or disagree with Cuban? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.