Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Pick 6: Brands, Stories, and Trends Shaping Sports Business #12

This is the "I should be outside raking leaves during fall break" installment of Pick 6- What's been happening in sports business?

1. Branded Content Makes Its Way to Sports Media Apps

Annoyed by ads and video pre-roll when you are using mobile apps? A workaround to that issue is to integrate brands into app content. Dick's Sporting Goods is doing just that in collaboration with ESPN's WatchESPN app. Is advertising still perceived  as advertising by the audience when it is presented as entertainment as part of an app interaction?

2. Make Twitter an Indispensable Professional Development Tool

Students- Let your classmates be the ones using Twitter to tell their friends how bored they are in class or how wasted they got last night. Take another approach to using Twitter: Key professional development tool. Use Twitter to identify "persons of interest," keep tabs on current events, and build a network. In addition, use two powerful Twitter features- chats and hashtags- to benefit your professional preparation.

3. Beacons Signal New Fan Experience at College Football Games

Beacon technology holds great promise for digital marketing. The ability to communicate with people in the context of their current physical location can add value by enhancing the relevance of communications with them. Ole Miss is incorporating beacon technology at football games to create a more memorable game day experience. What are other ways that beacon technology could be used to add value for fans? Are there any risks or concerns to introducing this technology to live sporting events?

4. Social Media Takes Prominent Role in Athletics Marketing at Big Ten Schools

You have likely heard the saying "define your brand or it will be defined for you." This thought is especially relevant to social media. As a brand owner, you can be a passive spectator to what others are saying about you (please don't), or you can proactively monitor, promote, and participate in the conversation. Some college football programs are following in the footsteps of their professional tea counterparts by establishing social media hubs or command centers. 

5. Hall of Fame Coach Says Nike Too Influential in College Basketball

Perhaps you did a double take when reading the headline. A college coach whose program benefits from a $2.6 million per year investment from an athletic shoe company thinks shoe companies are too influential? In this case, University of Louisville coach Rick Pitino singled out Nike (Louisville's partner is Adidas). Pitino lamented that shoe companies have too much influence among high school players, to the point they can sway which school a prized recruit decides to attend. Perhaps Pitino's primary complaint has merit: Does the money and product shoe companies spend with college athletic programs give them a disproportionate voice in decision making within an athletic department?

6. Are Live Sports a Blessing or Curse for Cable TV Industry?

We are in the Golden Age of sports consumption. If you are a sports fan, you can gorge on more live events, shows, archived content, and sports entertainment in general than ever before. It is not only our appetite for sports that has created this content glut; TV networks have driven up rights fees by realizing the value of sports to attract audiences. But, the lure of sports comes at a cost- first to the TV networks paying rights fees and second to the viewers in the form of higher monthly bills. Are we close to a tipping point beyond which higher fees damage the profitability of networks and customers are turned off by ever rising rates?

How TV's Sports Addiction Could Kill Its Business, by Derek Thompson, The Atlantic

Video of the Week

A new feature beginning with this post is sharing an interesting clip from the sports world. As a Nashville Predators fan, I had to pick this clip. Ottawa Senators forward David Legwand spent the first 14 seasons of his NHL career in Nashville, so when he played his first game in Nashville as a visitor he reverted to an old habit: Going to the Nashville penalty box when he got a penalty. The penalty box attendant gave him directions to the appropriate destination. It reinforces the notion that we are indeed creatures of habit!