Professional and collegiate sports are BIG businesses and continue to grow at incredible rates (from $71B in 2018 to $80B in 2022).
Even less traditional sports, like X-Games to E-Sports, have proven hugely popular. Unfortunately, most sports organizations are leaving significant money on the table by not better engaging their fans. They rely on lacklustre promotions and paid advertising to buy impressions, rather than implement proven audience engagement principles that make lasting impressions, result in above-average affinity, and encourage an advocacy that helps convert casual participants into raving fanatics.
Why are so many sports marketing organizations failing to properly engage audiences? We can’t blame the entire sports industrial complex because we found notable exceptions in governing leagues, such as the NHL and UFC, and within franchise icons like the Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Lakers, and Toronto Maple Leafs. Heck, even the CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders are doing many enviable things worthy of copying.