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The 2014 Sports & Entertainment Alliance in Technology (SEAT) conference brought out leading sports business professionals from the biggest leagues and sports teams to talk about fan engagement, analytics and other marketing technology topics.

In speaking with SEAT attendees, I learned about three challenges that are top of mind for marketing, information and data professionals in the sports world:

1. Keeping up with the evolution of customer engagement and behavior
2. Going beyond analytics and big data to truly understand customers
Leveraging customer insight to drive corporate partnerships/sponsors, ticket sales and brand/marketing

What's interesting is that these customer trends are relevant not just to sports organizations. In fact, these are some of the underlying issues fueling the customer revolution and changing how companies operate today. As Paul Greenberg noted in his Sunday morning session, the customer engagement landscape is rapidly evolving and successful businesses must as well.

This urgent need for organizations to engage customers is why I'm excited to present with Brian Moyer, Managing Director of Market and Media Research at NASCAR, for an upcoming Vision Critical webinar. (I spoke with Brian Moyer at SEAT about turning fan/customer insights into action. Also at the SEAT conference, I was part of a panel hosted by Charlie Shin about the importance of complementing big data analytics with more contextual, qualitative insights.)

On August 5th, Brian and I will share how NASCAR engages the Official NASCAR Fan Council, an online community of 12,000 fans that were selected to provide constant feedback and opinion. During the one-hour webinar, we'll talk about how using a customer intelligence platform has helped NASCAR make more informed business decisions and drive its business forward.


Fan intelligence fuels NASCAR

NASCAR's business is incredibly successful: it attracts more Fortune 500 sponsorships than any other sport. The company's success is in no small part due to its ability to gather ongoing feedback and insight directly from fans. NASCAR's community is so successful that in 2009, Forrester Research awarded the NASCAR Fan Council the Forrester Groundswell Award in the Business-to-Consumer Listening category. More importantly, the community has helped NASCAR increase its research activities by 300% while decreasing costs. Fan input has been integral in some key changes at NASCAR, including a double-file restart.

In the competitive sports and entertainment industry, companies such as NASCAR prove that consistent fan engagement can drive business results. If you'd like to learn how engagement can drive business results in your organization, I'm sure NASCAR's story will spark new ideas that you can implement. Please register for the webinar to learn more.

How Nascar Increases Fan Engagement and Drives Business Decisions

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