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THE GAME PLAN: How Football Clubs Use Fans Data Base to Win


Who are your fans? Do you really know the people that effectively support your football club or the people who regularly attend your club events, do you know them? Now, do you know the factors that attract them to come out in mass to support your club as well as the factors that could stop them from attending your next game, do you really know? Now don’t assume you know. Gone are the days when managers make critical decisions based on experience and intuitions – you might just be surprise to find out how in-correct your decisions are. Well sometimes, it might be too late to correct and the blunder might be too grave, something that can be avoided.

Information technology has made it possible for us not to assume anymore. With your personal computers and mobile devises, you build data base of your contacts – families, friends, church members, business colleagues, customers etc. The data base if applied and analyzed well, could give to you a more accurate information to make wise decisions in your life. It’s not different with football business. The same way you asked your personal contacts for their names,  mobile number, email address, office or home address etc, a football l club could do so too, to build a data base of it’s fans. Such demographic and psycho graphic information is so important for their marketing intelligence system (MIS).

How A Football Club Can Build Fans Data Base

With a simple Microsoft Access program, you can create a form and ask your fans to fill them out during your games at the stadium. Your club could as well build customized software or use the Google document (www.google.com/docs) if you want fans to sign in online.



How to Collect Fans Data Base

Manchester United uses a simple approach to collect it’s fans data base. Club membership is free to any fan. To become a member a fan simply completes an application, which is actually a 10 question lifestyle survey. After completing the application, the fan receives an attractive bar-coded membership card that functions as a tracking mechanism to monitor future attendance.

Manchester United card carrying fans receive points for their attendance by “Swiping” their card at an electronic kiosk inside the stadium. Each game is worth three points, with selected games worth four or five points. In the same way it works, the program is similar to a frequent flier program – the more games you attend, the higher the level of the reward. Prizes are given at the end of the season.


How to Use Data Base to Serve Fans Better


The data base created from the fans information provides Manchester United with a target group for ticket plans, Special events and Merchandise plans.

The likelihood of selling a ticket plan to someone in this data base is high, because he or she have demonstrated knowledge of and interest in the Manchester United football club products and services through their previous attendance.

In fact, by monitoring fans attendance, Manchester United is positioned to suggest a ticket plan that reflects a fan’s current level of interest in the club.

The data base can also be used to identify fans who have not attended very frequently, giving Manchester United marketing staff an opportunity to contact such fans to determine whether there is a problem and to demonstrate that  Manchester United are caring and concerned about  their fans; with hope they can help renew their interest once more.

The Marketing Intelligence Fans Data Base should provide A Football Club

The data base should give critical information of the nature and extent of the football market.

·         Size of the Market (Total number of football lovers living or working within an area where the club operates).
·         The demographics of football lovers residing or working within a critical geographic radius where the club operates
·         The purchase behaviors and consumption pattern of football lovers in the area.
·         The level of spectator-ship or participation of football lovers in football events.
·         Data of future trends (Change of events and service provision pattern as well as changes in consumption pattern).

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