9. Fan Engagement Apps: The future of sports

Corona Virus infection numbers are once again rising, meaning the return of fans to sports stadiums and events in normal capacity is still a long while away. Despite not physically being in the stadiums, fans can still support and cheer on their favourite teams and players with fan engagement apps. The development of such apps started years ago, as clubs and organisations began to recognise the importance of engaging with fans. In corona times, these fan engagement apps seem to be the future of sports until we can all celebrate in stadiums together again.

The impact of social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.) on the sports world has been immense. Fans from all over the world can now receive accurate updates about games happening across the globe, interact with their favourite team and players on a different level and unite with fellow supporters.

Before the days of live streaming, if one wanted to know how a game was going, who was in the lead, and you could not physically attend the event, you would have to watch it on TV or listen to it on the radio. That changed the second live streaming was introduced. Now you could watch a game or a race where you want and how you want.

With these technological developments, we no longer have to worry about attending an event live. Currently, however, no one can attend sports events in stadiums. This leads to a problem: how do clubs and organisations keep fans interested and engaged?

The solution: Fan Engagement Systems

In Japan, Yamaha developed an app that allows fans to continue to cheer on their team and create a full-stadium atmosphere despite watching safely from home. The Remote Cheerer by SoundUD apps enables fans to cheer, chant, clap, boo from home. The sounds are then broadcast to the stadiums in real-time and the players hear them. This not only allows fans to still be involved in creating a good atmosphere but also helps the players in the empty stadiums. The atmosphere that fans create in stadiums is so important to the players on the field that not having it can affect their performance. The atmosphere that the Remote Cheerer app helps create is a small way of ensuring that players still feel the support by their fans despite them not being there physically.

As Cheerer helps players feel the support from fans, there are also fan engagement apps that also create benefits for the audience as well as sponsors. There are many different tools out on the market that enables fans to vote for the most valuable player, interact in digital games where they can win prizes, follow game updates and more. For clubs, the question will be how to utilize these digital platforms to engage with fans that are stuck watching from home and create that something extra in these hard times. They should also think about how these systems can help sponsors retain their ROI sense the in-stadium commercial becomes less attractive.


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