So crowds for Phoenix games (the professional Wellington Football team) are struggling at the moment. I was just wondering if you fine people had any suggestions – given that the majority of games are likely to be stuck being on Sunday’s, in what ways can the Phoenix shift the demand curve right cost effectively?
For me there are two main areas to look into:
- Integration with the community 1: Letting kids in free (if they bring a paying adult) could be a relatively cheap way to get a greater amount of community integration, get the crowds up, and increase revenue. The games are largely on a Sunday, so getting families involved is the way to go – this sort of idea needs a long term view, as the kids getting in for free will be paying in the future.
- Marketing: People don’t know when the games are, and aren’t getting excited about the games. Surely there are cheap forms of viral marketing that could help improve awareness and increase value? To do this you need a clear idea of what the team “means” and what people “value” when going to the Phoenix – you aren’t just selling a game, you are selling more than that.
- Integration with the community 2: Marketing it as part of the community. It is a Wellington team, so we need to ask ourselves “what is Wellington”, what are some special parts of Wellington – and in what way can we integrate the Phoenix with that. Wellington sees itself as “cool and edgy” – sort of like a mini-version of San Fransisco – so is there some way we can use a family friendly version of this concept to sell the team.
- Support Yellow Fever: Surely Yellow Fever has some ideas regarding how to improve the environment within and prior to the game. A supporters group needs support – it can’t be expected to build up everything by itself. Now there is some of that going on for sure – but I’m sure there are ideas within Yellow Fever that could be more clearly articulated, and would cheaply add to the experience for potential game goers.
There is an underlying principal for all this to me – it isn’t as simple as some exogenous service that is watching a football game here, that won’t get much demand in Wellington. You are selling an experience that depends on the size of the crowd coming in the first place – the people in the crowd value the community and the experience that is being provided by other people, and their actions, in the crowd.
Given that, you can only have larger crowds by having larger crowds – there is “multiple equilibrium”. The only way to push ourselves into a state where more people come is to build up excitement and information outside of the games, and offer to work with Yellow Fever to create a dynamic environment inside the game.