Sports Marketing: Give Your Youth Sports Program the Pro Treatment With SMS

Sport Marketing with SMSIf you’ve watched sports on TV over the past couple of years you’ve probably heard the commentators say something like this:

“Text 72345 to vote for today’s Player of the Game.”

Or perhaps:

“Text YOURTEAM to 37373 to sign up for team updates, stats, scores, and schedules.”

Obviously this is a way to get people to opt into a sports team’s SMS marketing campaign. But what you might not know is just how beneficial group SMS has been to professional sports teams recently. Even in a country that is mad for sports, where billions of dollars are spent every year at stadiums and arenas, the rise of SMS marketing has opened up yet another opportunity for growth.

All across major professional sports leagues, opt-in group SMS is keeping fans engaged and interested in their teams regardless of whether they’re championship-caliber or in “a rebuilding year.” Scheduling alerts help plan what they’re going to watch on TV. News updates provide endless fodder for water-cooler conversation. And regular contests and giveaways keep texters coming back for more.

Text messaging works wonders for the NBA’s Chicago Bulls and the Phoenix Suns and the Philadelphia 76ers are giving their SMS Marketing efforts the full court press, but what does this mean for you?

If you’re part of a school or youth sports organization, consider some of the same SMS strategies the pros use.

First, the obvious: if you’re not using your SMS capabilities to inform your group of upcoming game times and field locations, start. This is a simple and powerful way to improve attendance at games, rallies, and booster club events.

Also, if you’re part of a high school sports club, feel free to give some of your star players the star treatment with stat updates. Sports fans love tracking stars and breaking down statistics. A weekly update of your team’s win-loss record, leading players, “plays of the week”, and maybe even some record-breaking news will spark major interest and discussion between games. And if your team or star athlete is on their way to a championship year, a regular update like this will make each next home game a bigger and bigger event.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and, in this case, a great way to take your school sports marketing efforts to the next level. It will create stronger bonds with alumni and maybe even make current students proud to be part of the school community. Really any strategy that keeps fans engaged with your team or organization between games is a great strategy for SMS marketing. So the next time you see an announcer promote an SMS campaign during a pro sports game, don’t be afraid to brainstorm ways to apply it to your club. It’s still a new idea in the highest level of sports so you may be breaking new ground in your community.

Eric Duncan

Eric Duncan writes about Marketing for TextMarks--The industry leading SMS Marking & Communications platform.

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