Mobile Apps for Sports

How many apps do you currently have on your mobile device? How many of those do you use? Seriously, think about it – probably fewer than half on a regular basis. Is your organization considering a mobile app for your sports team or venue?

If you want your app users to actually use your app it must be centered around utility. If your mobile app is not useful and does not provide a great amount of utility to your customers, you might as well not even make an app. If people aren’t going to do something with your app more than download and forget about it, you should just forget about the whole project. Regardless of whether your app is free or paid, the utility must still be there. It must provide them with such great value as it relates to your brand, that your customers would want to use it everyday.

Here are a few suggestions of things to include:

– Current news and information (I was going to leave this just “news,” but if it isn’t current or in-depth information they can’t find anywhere else, why would they use your app when they’ve probably already got another great source of information – like your website…maybe you could deliver app subscribers certain types of content before you post anywhere else?)
– Schedule of games and other events (luncheons, golf tournaments, kick-off events, etc.)
– Tickets: Buy, Sell, Upgrade – huge sales opportunity here, especially with the upgrade ability; if you set it up for fans to “opt-in” to geo-fencing capabilities, you could automatically prompt them with seat locations better than what they have already purchased. NOTE: It is normal for teams to stop selling tickets online a certain amount of time before game time, so this would make it easy on the box office employees to load available inventory to the app for allocation into a bank of seats fans could upgrade into, just by using your mobile app!
– Concessions/merchandise credit account – load money into your mobile app to use towards purchases in-house or online; the in-house purchases would be made by scanning a barcode/QR code associated with your account that is auto-generated by the app (Starbucks does a great job with this)

Of course there are probably numerous other ways you could implement a mobile app for a sports team or organization, but the principle of doing so MUST be centered around utility. Give your fans more control over their experience and help them do the things they want to do – in essence, be useful and make it easy for them to spend more money. Sure that’s not why some of us are in this business, but you’re just giving them more of what they really want right?

Give them more of what they want, make it easier for them to do so, and your fans will thank you for it.

Go Forth!

I have adapted Mitch Joel’s principle of utility for mobile apps in this post from his recent book, Ctrl Alt Delete: Reboot Your Business. Reboot Your Life. Your Future Depends on It.

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