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Digital Fan Engagement After COVID-19: Three Takeaways

The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t been easy on anyone, least of all on sports fans and content providers. For many fans, watching sports is a way to unwind and get away from the stresses of everyday life. Unfortunately, most sports organizers were unequipped to deal with the obstacles presented by a pandemic, which led to cancellations and many fans being forced to find alternative ways to fulfill their desire for sports-related content.

This was true not just of sports fans, but fans of all stripes. During the pandemic, most entertainment and media engagement transitioned from physical events to a more digital-oriented landscape. Although more sports events are finally happening again, the pandemic is far from over, and there is no doubt that it will take more time before consumers revert back from their digital habits after living through a year and a half of lockdown — if ever. For companies who want to increase fan engagement in 2021 and onwards, here are three vital considerations to top your checklist.

Prioritize Data Capture

If there was any lesson to be learned in the 21st century about fan engagement even before the pandemic, it was that data is king. However, the lifestyle changes forced by the pandemic have made data capture an even more vital component to any digital fan engagement strategy. As with any attempt to engage with people, advertisers have to know their audience.

While physical advertisements can be placed in specific locations where visitors tend to have similar specific interests or otherwise have something in common, on the web, it is far more difficult to tune your advertisements towards an audience. Unless you concentrate on sophisticated data capture and analysis, this can seem like an insurmountable obstacle. However, companies like us here at Fanisko make this easy by providing advertising companies with the tools and analytical services required to efficiently capture and use consumer data.

Catch Trends Early

Another prime lesson of the COVID-19 pandemic was the significance of social media and digital connection in people’s lives, which became particularly apparent once physical social interaction became more difficult. Social media use skyrocketed during the pandemic, and platforms such as TikTok increased in users and online media presence at an astounding rate.

Companies that caught on to this trend early on were able to capitalize extremely well on a platform with a huge user base, without having to compete with every other advertiser. Social media platforms that make it easier to engage with content and other people have taken new importance in the post-pandemic world, and sports companies should take care to stay informed on the newest trends in order to most effectively engage fans.

Bridge the Digital Divide

One of the most critical issues that most sports and advertising companies had to face at the start of the pandemic was the lack of preparation and infrastructure to transition to a completely digital media platform. Not only did this result in lost engagement during the early days of the pandemic, but it also reveals an endemic issue in the sports industry at failing to keep up with modern advances.

More people than ever are engaging with digital content, and different generations engage with different types of digital content. Understanding what your target audience is using and transitioning to a model of engagement that can easily reach people digitally is crucial for success in 2021 and beyond. To learn more about how we can help you build your brand, please contact us today.


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