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The Top News in #Sportsbiz – 08.19.13 – 08.26.13


There is a lot of great news coming from the world of #sportsbiz this week. On top, Twitter advertising partnerships may be where the sports business world is headed.  In other news, the Dodgers’ win streak leads to a local business boom, how the US open will be utilizing more technology this year, the healthy competition between FS1 and ESPN, and Front Row Marketing Services taking on the Breeders’ Cup.

Social Media In Sports

Twitter advertising partnerships may take shape with Amplify

Twitter advertising partnerships may be the future of sports marketingIn the short time that social media has been around, companies have been trying to figure out a way to turn it into stable revenue.  With the sports world as a whole turning to social media, it only seems reasonable to earn revenue from the various platforms.  Twitter advertising partnerships may be just around the corner with its new “Amplify project”.

Teams like Hendrick Motorsports are already leveraging social media as part of their sponsorship negotiations.  Twitter Amplify will take that idea to the next level.

The basis of Amplify is to connect itself with companies that provide sports content and their sponsors.  The Twitter platform is perfect for providing a way for content providers to share short sporting event clips at an almost unnoticeable level.  Ideally, the revenue generation will be split between Twitter, the content provider, and the distributor.

The project has already undergone a market test with ESPN and Turner Sports.  According to the Sports Business Journal, over a dozen other companies are joining the venture, including the PGA Tour, Time Inc., and MLB Advanced Media.  As long as advertisers believe the platform will allow them to leverage the platform’s market, the capital should be present.  Twitter advertising partnerships may be where sports is headed.

You can read more here.

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Sports Business

Dodgers win streak leads to local business boom

Dodgers win streak leads to business boomAs the Los Angeles Dodgers continue to win, so do the local business owners.  LA is currently on a winning streak of 45 out of 55 games in the last two months.  This appears to have given Dodgers fans a hunger for more; literally.

Because of the excitement surrounding the team, fans have regained interest in baseball.  Local restaurants, bars, and sports apparel stores have seen a significant rise is sales.  Bars such as Red Lion Tavern have capitalized on the situation by offering fans with a valid game ticket a 10% discount before and after games.  At the same time, LA sportswear company Bling Circus has seen a major rise in Dodgers apparel since early June.

The Dodgers also now lead the league in attendance. Average attendance at home games is 45,000, up 10% from last season. A team-record 31,000 people have season tickets.  With more fans flocking to the stadium for games, Guisados, the Mexican food spot a half-mile away from Dodger Stadium, sales are up 25% from the beginning of the season.  Co-owner Armando De La Torre Jr. took notice:

“The traffic before games passing by is so slow that people have nothing to do but look at our red building.  When they come back through the next game and get stuck, they decide to stop and check us out.”

With the Dodgers in first place in the NL West, the Dodgers are looking forward to the playoffs.  Economists are claiming to see an even bigger rise when the playoffs begin.  For local business owners, seeing more blue will likely mean seeing more green.

You can read more here.

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Sports Technology

US Open to utilize more technology this year

US open utilizes new technologyThe US Open is set to begin on Monday.  A major change this year will be behind the scenes, as employees, media members, volunteers, and contractors will be prepared to work with more technology.  As a direct result, the experience of the players and coaches will be enhanced.

Major changes this year include everything from a secure web portal where they can find videos and statistics, to a transportation system designed to ensure that everyone arrives in plenty of time for their matches.  The new technology has been introduced to better accommodate player’s expectations and to entice them to come back.  Larry Bonfante – USTA chief information officer – was optimistic about the moves the US Open is making:

“We really want to separate ourselves from the pack in making the players happy.  We want them to look forward to coming to the US Open.”

Since the opening of Arthur Ashe Stadium, the US Open has been at the forefront of technology systems.  Replay technology and real-time video updates have been major implementations.

Even better is the event management system, which  runs everything from food and beverage inventory to facilities work orders to security surveillance systems.  This system has begun to utilize a mobile version as well.  This allows Bonfante’s team to remain mobile:

“A lot of staff running the event are not tethered to a desk.  This way, they get a lot more information to make better and more timely decisions.”

You can read more here.

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Sports Media

Healthy competition between ESPN and FS1

healthy competition between fs1 and espnWith the recent launch of Fox Sports 1, the new 24/7 sports network has piqued interest with employees at ESPN.  FS1 launched with decent ratings and a lot of media hype.  It now appears there is some healthy competition going on between the two companies.

During its recent media day, ESPN found FS1 to be a popular topic.  SportsCenter’s Steve Levy said:

“I can tell you our show meeting on Saturday had a different feel to it than previous show meetings. Everyone is well aware of what’s at stake here and what’s going on and we’re rather confident.”

ESPN finds it invigorating and reenergizing to have new competition in the field.  Perhaps this new energy has also persuaded the company to redesign its set for 2014.  The cost of the new studio is reportedly near $125 million.  This redesign has certainly come at a “convenient” time considering the pressure from FS1.  Seth Markman – a senior coordinating producer at ESPN – said he thinks they are having as much fun as FS1:

“That’s how they attacked it, sort of like, let’s paint ESPN as your grandfather’s network and we’re the new kids, the fun kids. They’re doing it from a PR standpoint. I watched their first few shows pretty closely, I don’t think they’re having anymore fun than our guys are having right now on our shows.”

ESPN believes that competition makes everyone better.  That means the end consumer may benefit.

You can read more here.  Also, check out the new ESPN set here.

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Sports Marketing

Front Row Marketing Services to help Breeders’ Cup

Breeders cup to be marketed by Front RowLast year, ESPN stepped aside as the rights holder of the Breeders’ Cup.  ESPN claimed a change in programming strategy as its reason for withdrawing with two years left on their contract.  In light of the situation, NBC took over the rights to the Cup with a multi- year deal.  Now, Front Row Marketing Services has stepped in to help market the event.

Because of the new deal with NBC,  the Breeders’ Cup Classic was broadcast live on national primetime television across the US for the first time last year.  Coupled with the NBC Sports Network, the Breeders’ Cup received nine and a half hours of TV coverage.

The idea of Front Row Marketing stepping in is to allow for increased awareness and new brand partnerships.  Drew Sheinman – senior vice president and chief revenue officer of the Breeders’ Cup – explained the decision for choosing Front Row Marketing Services:

“After a thorough review, we chose Front Row because they have established a stellar reputation and a proven track record of success with world class properties like Formula One Grand Prix and America’s Cup in sponsorship acquisition and integrated event services and strategies that increase the value and dynamic presence of those enterprises.”

With horse racing seemingly repositioning itself in the sports world, you can expect Front Row to take advantage of that.  You can catch the Breeders’ Cup on November 1st and 2nd, at Santa Anita Park in California.  With 14 races scheduled, you can expect a lot of coverage from NBC.

You can read more here.

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