ENGAGING FAN LOYALTY – A FLEXIBLE APPROACH TO SPORTS MARKETING

ENGAGING FAN LOYALTY – A FLEXIBLE APPROACH TO SPORTS MARKETING

 

GOLF, FAN LOYALTY AND BRANDS

 

Knowing the best way to engage with fan loyalty is crucial for any agency active in the sporting arena.

 

All sports fans share a sense of passion for their favourite team, player or event.  Being able to link that sentiment to a marketing campaign takes experience and skill – and can offer great results.

 

This summer, two of the biggest sporting events were golf tournaments.  We were at both the Scottish Open and the Open Championship.  Both tournaments highlighted the popularity of the sport. Tens of thousands flocked to both courses and tens of millions watched on their TV’s, laptops or mobiles.  These events attracted the top golfers in the world as well as huge global brands. Golf is a truly globalised sport and international brands naturally gravitate to these popular events.

 

This summer’s tournaments were similar in many aspects.  Both had historical links to golf, iconic coastal locations and passionate and loyal fans.  Despite these similarities there presented very different objectives from an agency perspective.  The Scottish Open required an online marketing strategy to support and drive ticket sales to existing and new fans as well as promoting other initiatives via strategic social media support and delivery.

The requirements at the Open Championship were more traditional and centred on strategic PR and marketing support which sought to capitalise on fan loyalty through sign ups to The One Club – the R&A’s membership scheme.  Having a flexible but also innovative outlook is so important for an agency in these arenas.

 

 

2019 SCOTTISH OPEN

 

 

 

The Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open, a prestigious Rolex Series event, was hosted by The Renaissance Club, North Berwick for the first time.  Our teams produced video content that ‘opened the doors’ of the course to the public.  Our series of short films grew the awareness of the venue among golf fans and assisted in achieving record attendances for the event.

Rory Mciltoy playing a shot at 2019 ASI Scottish Open. The event witnessed fan loyalty at its best

Our role with social media support was also crucial.  Producing and posting content on behalf of The Scottish Open was something we relished and took great pride in.

By setting the correct tone and engaging with fans across a variety of platforms, we successfully contributed to the events success by expanding the off-course narratives that the European Tour were keen to develop and expand around the 2019 campaign; narratives such as:

 

The content we created and posted went a long way to ensuring that these diverse initiatives reached new audiences and engaged the media.

 

 

2019 OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

 

 

Hot off the wheels of a successful week at the Renaissance Club, we landed in Northern Ireland for a second week of golf.  The 148th Open Championship returned to the country for the first time since 1951.

 

Our task?  To encourage existing fans in attendance to join The Open’s “One Club’.  Now, it’s not as straightforward as it sounds.  The activation required creativity to design and commission a memorable prop, as well as engaging with fans on a one-to-one basis.  Many of whom were just desperate to watch the golf on the course.

 

Prop for One Club tent at 148th Open Championship, Royal Portrush Golf Club, Northern Ireland focussing on fan loyalty

 

Despite the eagerness of visitors to head onto the course, a constant flow of fans were attracted in and signed up.  Many were drawn by the impressive 148th Open prop, filled with hundreds of golf balls and the simple added fun, opportunity and incentive of winning daily prizes by guessing the correct number.

 

 

Another saught after talking point was a photo opportunity with the Claret Jug which was on display at various times throughout the week.

 

 

REMEMBER THE MESSAGE FOR LOYAL FANS

 

 

No matter the sports event that you may be involved with, we know exactly how to market your message.  This summer it was golf, but we have also been out working across football, athletics and swimming.   At Material we know that influence through experience is the right way to lead any successful sporting event and engage and enhance fan loyalty.

 

If you want to find out more, contact beth@materialmc.co.uk

 

 

 

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