Nashville Predators: Marketing Strategy for an NHL Franchise 1. Specific variables in Nashville that have a direct impact on the success of the Nashville Predators The success of a team mainly depends on some key variables within the home city, which will have a direct impact on the key measures of the team performance other than the league standing, which include number of ticket sales, amount of corporate sponsorship and revenue from building operations. It is of essence to note that some of these variables are external factors that are beyond the control or influence of the specific team while for other variables the team can either influence them or realign them in their favor (Duncan 3).
One of the key variables within the home city that has a direct impact on the success of a team is the population of the home city. For example, the Predators in Nashville can attribute their previous success to the fact that the team is located in the second most populous city of the state of Tennessee with a population of approximately 1.5 million residents. This high population figure indicates a potential for high fan base and it is for this reason that the management of the Predators were again considering Nashville as potential location for the team even after the team changes ownership (Duncan 5).
It is critical to note that a high fan base usually infers to high-ticket sales and a big number of stay at home fans, which collectively will positively influence the amount of corporate sponsorship that a team can get. The second variable within the homes city that has a direct impact on a team’s success is the number of corporations within the home city.
This variable is significant since it will determine the possible amount of corporate sponsorship a team can get. For example, Nashville is the headquarters of Dollar General Corporation, Hospital Corporation of America and Nissan North America, and all these corporations may choose to sponsor the Predators as part of their advertisement strategy, thus generating for the team additional income (Duncan 3). The third variable within the home city that determines a team success is the economy of the home city or income per capita.
The economic performance of the home city will influence the ticket prices, the number of ticket sold and the amount of corporate sponsorship. For example, (Duncan 3) noted Nashville has a robust economy and the average income per family was $49,804, which was higher than the national median income per family. This means that the home city fans can easily afford to buy tickets and corporations have high disposable income for sponsorship deals with the Predators. Lastly, the availability of a hockey arena within the home city also determines the success of a team.
For example, in Nashville, the predators played at the Sommet Center and since the Predators were an indigenous team of the city, the team enjoyed a discounted lease for the arena. The subsidization on the lease contract boosted the team’s financial performance and enabled home-based fans to watch live matches played by the team at the Sommet Center (Duncan 3). 2. Specific marketing programs targeting the die-hard fans of the predators According to (Duncan 10) the die-hard fans are those who consistently bought season tickets regardless of the prices.
However, (Duncan 11) quoted the executive vice president of sales and marketing for the Dallas Stars as saying that, the number of die-hard fans who bailout on a team within the first two years is higher than those who bailout after the two years period. Therefore, it is critical for the Predators to maintain their die-hard fans for more than two years in-order to guarantee their long stay, and effective marketing programs can achieve this. On sure way of effectively marketing to die-hard fans is through fan giveaways, which increases their attachment to the team.
For example, if Predators can give their die-hard fans autographed jerseys, the fans will try not to miss their matches and show off their autographed jerseys. Other fans will keep the giveaways as souvenirs thus, increasing their emotional attachment to the Predators (Duncan 11). Die-hard fans are definitely sports lovers and they are mostly likely to prefer television channels, radio stations, and websites that relate to sports. Therefore, if Predators wish to advertise their crucial matches or the matches that record low turnouts, then they can easily reach their die-hard fans through television, radio, and online advertisements in channels and sites that are sports oriented (Duncan 10-11).
3. Specific marketing programs targeting the casual fans of the predators (Duncan 10) described casual fans as those fans who watched hockey games as an entertainment experience and they usually opted for entertainment activities that will offer them value for their money. Earlier (Duncan, 2) suggested that for small market teams to be successfully they need to attract more casual fans and this emphasized on the need for the Predators to implement specific marketing programs that aim to attract casual fans to the team. In order to attract casual fans the Predators will have to place advertisements in television channels, radio channels, and websites that do not majorly relate to sports.
This is because; casual fans are not die-hard sports fans who commonly concentrate full-time on sports issues. Secondly, the Predators should give casual fans, giveaways such as the team’s merchandized products like cups or pens, and autographed jerseys.
Thirdly, the Predators should organise events such as charity events or music concerts as part of their marketing campaign through which casual fans can interact with Predators’ players. These marketing strategies have the potential to create attachment between the casual fans and the team and even possibly transform the casual fans into die-hard fans of the Predators. 4. Synergy or friction that arises from the marketing programs targeting the die-hard fans and that targeting the casual fans Synergy will only arise in the fan giveaways promotions, which have different target audience. The Predators will have an easy time coordinating or implementing this promotion strategy, as all the fans who attend the matches will receive giveaways and it will not be necessary to categories the fans in terms of who is casual or die-hard fan of the team. Friction will arise when the Predators’ sales and marketing department will have to place television, radio, and online advertisements in different channels and websites.
This is because of the difference in target audience and the likelihood that the target audiences will not watch the same television station, listen to the same radio station, or log into similar website.
This friction will be costly for the Predators, unlike when they would have placed all of their advertisements in the same television station, radio channel, and website. 5. How ticket sales and television broadcast interact Ticket sales and revenues from television broadcast interact on the basis that the Predators benefits directly if a fan attends their live matches and the team benefit indirectly if another fan watches the match live from their preferred location other than the arena where the game is playing live.
(Duncan 9) stated that the teams in the National Hockey League rely majorly on revenues accrued from ticket sales of which make up sixty per cent of the team’s total earnings. Revenues from television broadcast make up a small percentage of the teams’ total revenue and it supplement or boost the total earnings. The Predators can create synergy in the two and ensure growth in both by placing advertisements during live broadcasts to encourage those watching from other locations to watch their next match from the arena.
Secondly, the Predators can advertise to those who attend live matches in the arena to watch live broadcast of the team’s matches if they will not be able to make it to the arena during their next or future matches. Work Cited Duncan, Jamie. Nashville Predators: Marketing Strategy for an NHL Franchise. Ontario: Ivey Publishing. 2009 Print.