Following along the recent Sports Business Journal Sports Marketing Symposium in November 2016 [see recap] and one thought shared via Twitter astutely articulated the future.
The sports and entertainment world is more adept than ever at collecting data — from every transaction, every click, and even every movement, digital and physical. A method of collecting such data was step one. The next phase was funneling all of this data into a query-able database, typically known as a ‘data warehouse.’ (We’re talking terabytes of data here, folks). Then, analysts could use that data to draw insights, visualize reports, and understand the who/what/why/when/where more than ever before to create actionable segments and insights, to improve fan experience and precision marketing.
But, as Russell Scibetti suggests in his tweet (and Scibetti and KORE Software are among industry leaders in this space) computing power and programming acumen is at or near the point when such actions can occur in real-time and in a more precise and personalized manner than ever before. The visionary refrain is the notion of thousands of individual experiences for the thousands of fans in attendance at games and events.
It’s AI telling you when to leave based on where you live and the current traffic, where to park and enter the venue, where to get your preferred food and beverage (or have it pre-ordered for you in an app), maybe a welcome message from your favorite player while you’re making your way to your seat, a reminder about free face-painting for your kids (yeah, we know you have kids), and so on (and this is barely scratching the surface).
With so much data informing artificial intelligence mechanisms and increasingly more data making such mechanisms increasingly smarter, we are indeed on the precipice of an incredible new era of fan experience. When the entire experience and venue seems custom tailored to you — a Truman Show-like reality enabled by big data and actionable interpretation and activation of big data.
Personalization is the new expectation. And the power to personalize has never been great.