Speaking Fans' Language is Critical to Reaching Them, Say Sports Data Chiefs

by Devon Thomas  |  11.10.2016

Data is driving sports team management, said top sports data and analytics chiefs at Variety’s Big Data Summit at the Montage Hotel in Beverly Hills on Thursday, November 10.

On a panel called “Scoring High with Sports and Data,” topics centered around how data and analytics management is crucial for sports organizations that are working to ensure fans have the best experiences at games.

Jay Tucker, a program head at the USC Marshall School of Business, moderated the session. There were five speakers on stage, from left to right (pictured above) Brett Broich, head of analytics with MLS’ Los Angeles Football Club; Thomas Ciszek, head of research for Twitter; Cynthia Frelund, analytics expert with NFL Media; Sean Kundu, VP of New Ventures with the San Francisco 49ers; and Todd Sims, SVP digital at AEG.

“Actionability” was a key phrase used by several speakers.

“We’re trying to be better marketers, but none of it matters if you can’t act on it,” said Simms.

“If you don’t speak the language people listen to, they just don’t listen to you,” said Frelund.

Regarding the different tools panelists used to manage data projects, Kundu said he uses “geo-fencing” to track what attendees Tweet about and how they engage in a sports arena. Ciszek added that he uses GitHub to gather data. Frelund noted that the “empathy of storytelling” was key to gathering information, and she mentioned that talking to the players directly about what happened during a particular play was a great immediate source of data that’s much more immediate and human than a score on a board.

The panelists also touched on using Twitter to leverage data. Chicago Cubs fans, for example, “are a little more Trump than Hillary” fans, Ciszek found when looking at Cubs followers’ Twitter conversations. Also, to help ensure fans have memorable experiences at games, he was able to gauge music preferences to determine what to music to play during downtime.

← Back

New from Daily Brief

HOT SPOT: Lifetime Launches 'Knocked Up!
Cause + Effect uses simple line drawings and a baby-friendly palette to introduce unscripted series.
Multicultural TV Marketing: Touch, Don’t Reach, Your Audience
Panel of marketers at The Diversity Discussion shared tips for tapping into a multicultural audience.
Telemundo Tries Its Hand at Virtual Reality to Promote ‘El Chema’
Series is prequel to network’s hit drama “El Señor de los Cielos.”
Holiday Specials Move Into Top Ten of Nielsen Social Content Ratings
Join regulars, such as "The Walking Dead," "Empire" and "The Voice."
The Diversity Discussion: Diversity in Front of the Camera Starts Behind It
Tapping into diverse voices can lead to better storytelling and more advertising dollars for TV producers.
Netflix’s ‘Chasing Cameron’ Peers Into Life of A Social Media Sensation
Streaming service’s docu-series premieres Dec. 27.
Dec 7
PromaxGAMES Holiday Launch Event
Dec 13
NYC PromaxBDA Holiday Party 2016
Dec 15
LA PromaxBDA Holiday Party 2016
Mar 13, 2017
PromaxBDA Europe Conference 2017
Mar 14, 2017
PromaxBDA Europe Awards 2017
Jun 5, 2017
The Conference 2017
CharlieCo Advertisement Stephen Arnold Music Advertisement