Data mining is a revolutionary practice. It allows marketers to figure out how to target and deliver the best experience possible to their customers.

When it comes to sports, a $100 billion global industry, it’s no different. By gathering data on how sports fans are interacting with their favorite teams, talking about games and analyzing coverage, marketers are able to ensure that they’re correctly tailoring new products and services to them.

The power of connectivity in sports

Fans turn to their phones, TVs, computers and any internet-connected device when they want to partake in sports-centric dialogue. The fan experience happens online, all the time.

According to writer Eric Adams and the National Football League, more than 10 terabytes of data was transferred over the Wi-Fi network at this year’s Super Bowl. The average photo is 1 MB, which means that 10 million photos could have theoretically been sent over the Wi-Fi. Even though the most exciting game of the year was going on around them, fans still felt inclined to be on their phones, generating data.

If you’re in the sports industry and you want to come up with new ways to reach your demographic through data mining, here are three tips:

  1. Monitor social media

By looking at who’s tweeting, commenting, liking, Instagramming and sending Snapchats, marketers can determine who is engaged with sports.

According to Doz, the most popular social media site for discussing sports is Facebook, followed by YouTube and then Twitter. Sports fans will like or follow brands on social media in order to show team support, receive coupons and discounts, or be entered to win a prize relating to the sport.

Using all the conversations happening on these sites, marketers can choose what type of content they should be posting in order to keep people interested beyond the game.

  1. Look at viewing habits

Aside from analyzing the Nielsen ratings, marketers can collect data on fans that watch sports content from their internet-connected TVs.

Statistics from The NPD Group show that half of the households with internet in the United States now own a connected TV device. People have Blu-ray players, smart TVs, streaming media players and video game systems that allow them to see content on apps like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus.

If marketers track viewing habits before, during and after the game, they can gain a better understanding of their fans’ TV content consumption. They’re able to conclude what type of TV programming does well amongst fans, and how to improve it if necessary.

  1. Track website clicks

Every time someone logs onto a sports-themed website, their clicks should be tracked. Marketers need to look at which pages are the most popular, which content is being opened and how often visitors are going to the e-store to purchase sports merchandise.

Along with utilizing services that track how visitors navigate through websites, marketers can post exclusive content like behind-the-scenes videos, pictures and blogs to determine click-through and download rates.

Marketers should also look at where the traffic is coming from. Does a picture on Instagram uploaded by a player draw the most traffic to the website? Or does a blog about the game posted to Facebook bring people in? Once that data is collected, marketers know what strategies attract people to the site and keep them there.

As more and more people gain access to the internet, the data generated by sports fans will increase. It’s up to marketers to harness that data and make sure that fans are receiving a customized experience that’s sure to keep them engaged with teams, games, players and beyond.

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