Mobile location services at Super Bowl 50 optimize the fan experience
Whether they’re sporting a Denver Broncos or a Carolina Panthers jersey, the majority of attendees at this year’s Super Bowl will have at least one mobile device in their pocket. These days, fans expect to be able to leverage apps’ mobile location services to help them spend more time watching the action.
Over the past few years, there’s been a growing expectation for mobile experiences at sporting events, especially with the millennial generation.
“It does bear out in the research that as generational shifts happen, the expectation level goes more from a ‘this would be nice to have’ to a ‘what, you don’t have it’ kind of feature,” Michelle McKenna-Doyle, the senior vice president and CIO of the NFL, said of mobile capabilities at sporting events in a recent TechRepublic article.
New stadiums, such as the Atlanta Falcons Mercedes-Benz Stadium set to open in 2017, are being designed from the ground up to accommodate this level of fan connectedness. They are installing networks capable of providing fast wireless access for 70,000 fans, video intercom systems and digital signage in addition to the fan engagement app.
Fill your sponsors’ arenas and booths
Teams and stadiums rely on sponsors for revenue. Because these companies want a return on their investment, future contracts typically hinge on whether fans show up to vendor booths and events. In order to be successful in this sphere, marketers must get the word out about their giveaways, concerts and booths, and provide all the information spectators need to attend. For the Super Bowl, marketers created the Road to 50 app, which uses mobile location services technology to push notifications to local users about specific activities. Fans control the amount of information that they receive, and can also use the Near Me feature to map directions to nearby events occurring at the current time. Stadiums and teams can also use mobile technology to create online tickets and registration forms so that their fans don’t have to deal with paper tickets.
Increase food and drink revenue with express ordering and in-seat delivery
Sports enterprises are also dependent on food vendors renting space and making a certain percentage of sales. One of the easiest ways to increase your food and beverage revenue is to make it as easy as possible for fans to quench their hunger and satisfy their thirst.
Fans at the Superbowl won’t need to wait in a long line for their hot dogs or leave their seats to enjoy their beverage of choice. With the Super Bowl 50 stadium app, users can complete a profile and enter payment information before they leave their house. Once they’re at the big game, fans can use GPS technology to order from an online menu of express pickup locations nearby.
During regular season games, Niners fans can actually order food directly to their seats, but Mobile Sports Report reports that only drinks will be available for in-seat delivery during the Super Bowl, due to the high number of fans. The other feature that is not available in the Super Bowl app that is in the regular-season Levi’s Stadium app is the ability to buy a drink for a friend in another section and have it delivered to his or her seat. By using this technology, stadiums and teams can increase their food and drink revenue while boosting customer satisfaction. Though mobile ordering is still a bit of a novelty, this concept is likely to become the new standard.
Cheering on your team: Team apps keep fans connected
Teams count on merchandise sales. Thankfully, many fans think of buying apparel while they’re at the game. However, they often don’t head to the gift shop because they’re scared of missing a touchdown play or just don’t want to lug a bag around for the rest of the day.
The Panthers’ and Broncos’ apps both have a shopping link so fans can order merchandise from their phone. If users realize that they forgot to order a Super Bowl shirt while sitting in Levi’s Stadium on Sunday, they can order one during the game through their team’s app. That way, it will be waiting for them when they arrive home in a few days. By using mobile e-commerce technology, teams can boost their merchandise sales and increase fan engagement.
Though mobile integration at sporting events is still in its early stages of adoption, this level of connectedness will very soon become expected. Teams and stadiums that don’t embrace mobile will quickly see their revenue and fan engagement decrease.