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How Is Data Changing the Nature of Fan Engagement in Sports?



As professional sports teams and leagues are increasingly turning to data as a means to increase fan engagement, Loeb & Loeb partner Brian R. Socolow explores the many ways data is being used to attract fans to games and enhance the arena experience.

The full video transcript is below.

Fan engagement is an area that's really ripe for the use of data. When you go to a game — whether it's a hockey game, a football game or whatever it might be — and you're sitting in your seat, your experience is that you're watching what's happening on the floor or on the court. But what teams want to do is enhance that experience so that you want to go to the arena and pay that ticket price instead of watching at home. 

Leagues realize when you're sitting at home on your couch, you've got your big screen television, you've got your second screen there, you can get data and you can be very comfortable. They want to make sure fans still go to the arenas and pay those ticket prices and buy those hot dogs and sodas and all sorts of merchandise at the arena. They need to enhance that fan experience. Data allows those teams to do that. 

Teams will make data available at seats so fans can have that enhanced experience. Not only can you order food from your seat, but you'll get the data that's happening on the floor. You'll understand how fast somebody's running. You'll understand how much distance that player has covered on the basketball court. You might see what a player's heart rate or blood pressure is. So you'll really have a deep understanding of what's going on. Many fans are into fantasy sports, and data can be used in fantasy sports in a lot of ways. If you're a fan and you know a player on your team is dehydrated, that knowledge might influence your pick for your fantasy team. So there are a lot of different ways that data can be used to enhance fan engagement.