Sports Marketing benefited through Digital Marketing platforms and Digital Value Asset chain
Sports Marketing has always been one of the biggest verticals in any of the world's leading sporting goods industry. It's by far the biggest unit within Brand Marketing for any leading sporting goods industry.
- Have you ever wondered why sporting goods companies use professional athletes as their brand ambassadors?
- What a professional athlete (or asset) would mean to the brand that has contracted him / her?
- What does the brand mean to the contracted athlete (or asset)?
There is a complete value chain behind contracting the asset to realizing its value (ROI). In today's world this value chain is further augmented and supported by various Digital Marketing platforms and its realization complemented as a Digital Asset Value chain.
Let's start at the basics - why would someone want to contract a David Beckham and show case him as a brand ambassador?
The answer is simple - he is a huge icon, with a great fan following and people like to follow his trends and products he supports. Companies like to target this audience with major digital marketing campaigns and ad campaigns to enhance the volume of sales of their products. This could tie in with a major sporting tournament or a product launch.
So, how does one get contracted by a company? And how is his contracted period lived? This is the "life cycle of a contracted asset"; which is augmented by a digital value chain.
Life Cycle of a contracted Asset
- Today, many sporting goods companies are on the look out for partnering with professional athletes. They are particularly interested in capturing young talented professional athletes; seeing potential in the athletes in the long run and contract then cheap for a longer period of time. This is the term known as "Scouting". Many agencies provide custom built solutions to manage and track fresh talent. This is also used by Global companies that operate on Global and Local (subsidiary) levels (centralized or decentralized).
- The identified assets are then contracted by the companies. Many companies buy off the shelf products to manage their contract and workflow for the contract approval. Other companies hire agencies to build custom solutions to mange their contracts and approval workflow. This could be used heavily by marketing and controlling teams. Based on the fame of the athlete, different strategies and contract levels are tied to the asset.
- Based on the contract, the asset is then serviced with customized products. These products are created to enhance the performance of the athletes or cater to the specific needs of the athlete. There are many custom built solutions that provide customization features possible on products. Digital Marketing platforms are huge in product customization these days. Custom built systems also track the asset specific product order management from creation of the product to delivery to the asset. Different service levels are driven by contract values and significance of the asset. This also helps in targeting audience for niche products Vs mass products.
- Major companies also tie in new product launches with major sporting events and manage huge campaigns over digital media (social media - blogs, facebook, networking sites, youtube etc.) supporting the product launch. This can be associated with a niche athlete or a sponsored team. This is then followed up by social analytics. The companies are increasingly interested in knowing the success of their campaigns, in knowing the increased following of the people and the impact on product sales due to that campaign.
- Many companies track the growth of their assets, and renew or re-negotiate contracts based on the increasing or decreasing popularity of the assets. Many agencies provide custom built solutions to help aid in tracking the athlete's growth and worth.
- Finally, as a last step in the "Life Cycle management of an asset" - the companies are interested in the ROI of their contract. Many agencies provide custom built solutions to track the investment as per the contract (and bonuses based on performance) and also the value of the athlete. Companies would normally term the value of an asset as Strategic or Brand Marketing specific to volume of sales generated by the endorsed product. This determines contract renewal or termination.
The complete life cycle "asset centric" is now tracked by companies in various solutions which are Portal like. These solutions provide a comprehensive 360 degree view of the asset, his / her financial info, servicing info, major campaigns and product launches along with contractual info. Digital Marketing platforms and Digital Asset Value chain has increasingly over the years helped sporting goods companies transform their Sports Marketing vertical and enhance brand marketing; taking it to a next level which is getting closer to the asset and the trusted consumer increasing sales volume.