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    The Future of Sports Marketing is Now

    The future is always interesting to speculate on. It will be especially interesting to see what the future of sports marketing, sports sponsorship, and fan experience will look like in the years to come.

    This past decade we’ve seen unprecedented growth in the amount of money that sports has garnered in the marketplace.

    There are numerous reasons for this revenue growth that include a greater level of sophistication of the sponsorship sales process, a migration of sales talent to sports properties, time shifting technologies for television that have created a greater value proposition for live sports and the expansion of the digital space that has created new inventory.

    Sports teams may see this rate of expansion slow down a bit given its historic pace but continued growth is a certainty. The rate of revenue growth will be dependent on each team’s or league’s ability to react to the changing marketplace and avoid missteps that erode their share of audience or ability to sell.

    There are some rather subtle changes of greater significance that are impacting revenue streams in sports as well. Sophisticated teams are positioning themselves to be content providers for a multitude of platforms. This can when done right, vastly broaden a team’s ability to generate revenue, promote their sponsors, and engage their fan base. This will afford teams the potential to enhance revenue without necessarily having to sell more sponsors or more tickets.

    Additional revenues will be possible as teams gather consumer data from their fan base and serve as a conduit for brands to consumers. Much like advertising in the general market, relevancy to the audience will garner greater value to the sponsor. Ostensibly, consumers (fans) will readily share their brand preferences with their team via social media profiles, surveys and other means.

    Most of the teams in Phoenix are well ahead of the curve on the dynamic changes happening in this industry and some are woefully behind. If you are a sponsor spending money with a team that doesn’t get it or if you’re a team and you feel that your sponsorship efforts may be lagging in these areas, contact me here.

    The future of sports marketing is here … don’t get left behind.

    About the author: Ed Olsen is the CEO of Line Drive Sports Marketing. He is an adjunct professor at Arizona State University and has lots of opinions on all things sports.

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