HOW TO TURN YOUR RIVAL TEAM FANS INTO A MARKETING CHANNEL

[Observation]

Sport should be about to the spirIt of the game, not a fight. Some brand understands that better and use it. On the other hand, very often a negative press is a PRESS, so bragging about the other team may or may not work best, but it does bring the desired results. These tactics is used a lot in all sorts of dirty tricks, but can this be A POSITIVE marketing technique? Short answer —yes. Turning the competitiveness of various rival community into a campaign can be quite powerful. But this has to be done in a settled way and not pushed.

[Reflection]

During the ICC World Cup 2015, #MaukePeChauka campaign produced by a broadcaster channel Star Sport has captured the attention of both — the home team fans and rivals. In a humorous and sporting vein, the channel has been able to kindle the cricketing spirits. The campaign takes a detour from the standard patriotic, flag-waving promotions, and tickles the viewers’ funny bone. The narratives revolve around India’s World Cup history with each country.

Think SkyTV or ESPN go directly on Youtube with their promotions and actually making fun of their home team. Risky. Very risky. But it worked. The idea of carefully targeting social influence into integrated digital campaign gain both — huge overall spread of GLOBAL interest, especially at the rival teams diaspora around western countries. Results? Overall staggering global social media spread that would be unachievable media spend for the local (Indian) Sprot team. And of course the remakes are funnier than the originals. Fans got their creativity rolling ….

[Recommendation]

Study and segment your rival team interests the same way you do your own fans.

  • Deliver them the message that is relevant to them, but coming from a universal angle of the game. Make it personal to them.
  • Think about rival team fans on social as your secondary target. If you’re able to expand your rival fan community, you start to see people are searching your team and your sponsors. And eventually, that will lead to sales. At the end of the day, rival fans are your customers when it comes to overall experience of the game. Without them —the game doesn't exist.

About the author:

With 83% of fans checking social media while watching sports on TV and 63% using social media while at the stadium, both teams and sponsors need new strategies. Ilya Vensky is market strategist at PAG_Digital that creates direct to mobile fan engagements to open a new era of sports marketing.
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