Loyalty Programs (whether aimed at your total fan audience or a sub-set of fans, such as season ticket holders) clearly benefit the relationship between the Fan and the Team. Time and time again, we hear Fans' support for an authentic initiative to benefit and reward fans for their active participation and support of their Team. But beyond “Return on Experience” member-based loyalty programs are increasingly seen as core to driving behaviours that support the business of the Sports Team. Today, an active loyalty strategy is not just a “nice to have” but is seen as a core part of the business strategy, and as such a commercial profit centre that sits alongside ticketing, broadcast, and sponsorship as value drivers for Teams.
Below are just 5 examples of how our Clients' have used their programs to positively impact their business performance:
1. Getting More Fans to Attend - A client used their Season Ticket Holder loyalty program to reduce the number of "No Shows", and increase ticket utilisation. By incorporating a digital stamp card into the program, the Client was able to automatically record ticket utilisation (by ticket holder) and offer up new rewards to the holder for hitting certain thresholds. Result: this reduced no shows amongst season ticket holders from 13% to 3% (of tickets sold) in one season. This positively impacted season ticket renewals (ticket utilisation being a core determinant) and with increased attendance spend levels in the stadium.
2. Selling more tickets – Stats across multiple programs have shown, time and time again, that a Fan that is engaged in a member program is 5x times more likely to repeat that behaviour. Not all our clients have surplus Tickets to sell. But for those that do, actively promoting the purchase of a ticket as part of the loyalty program can materially help shift additional inventory.
3. Boost spending in the stadium – pre-loaded tickets (ticket + value) or reward credit (renewal incentives or mobile wallet) increases the Fan's propensity to spend and overall basket size and member spend by an average of 18%.
4. Boost Sponsor deal size – Clients with an active member-based program have been able to increase the value of their sponsor deals by up to 30%. Here size matters – as the opportunity of activating a prospective sponsor brand across the wider member base can make the fundamentals of the deal more attractive for potential sponsors. The good news is that scale is achievable – with some clients achieving enrolment rates of 50%-70% of the total fan audience (a measure based on social media followers).
5. Gateway to new market revenues – what you call "Fans" others see as potential customers. By hooking merchants, sponsors, and commercial partners (betting, NFT, retail, telecom, insurance etc…) directly into your loyalty program you are acting as a marketplace platform for trade between these partners and your fan base. Revenues flow from the ability to track member spending across this network, and the willingness of these partners to pay commissions and fees as a direct ROI. It is early days for these marketplace opportunities – but we are already seeing traction in spending levels upwards of $ 700 per member and commissions (flowing to the program) averaging 5%-8%. As programs scale so tapping into daily spending can generate ARPM (average revenue per member) of $26 per annum plus.