Location-based Digital Assets for Sports and Entertainment
It has been over two years since all sports and entertainment venues were shut down and in-person events were all cancelled due to a global pandemic. Several months later, people have finally started coming back to watch concerts, sports and other events. Now that in-person events are back, marketers are challenged on how to engage the customers during events that will reignite their passion to watch events in-person and encourage them return to the venue and incentivize them with loyalty rewards.
The new generation of audience has elevated their expectations when it comes to fan experiences. They come to events not just to enjoy the event itself, but to socialize and build a community with other people of the same interest. They want an enhanced fan experience — one where they feel they belong, recognized, and appreciated. They want to be able to share their experiences through video streaming or posting photos.
This is a generation that is incredibly technology-savvy and are constantly connected with their communities. They engage easily in the digital world – be it in web 2.0’s social media or web 3.0’s metaverse. They acquire digital assets that serve as proofs of activities they participate in, places they have been to, or rare items that have some exclusivity attached to it. If sports and entertainment industry is able to take advantage of innovative technologies to make it more exciting for these fans to come to their events, it is a win-win situation.
Loyalty rewards are table stakes.
A tried and tested strategy in marketing is the reward system. Most brands have implemented a reward system that will allow them to reach their loyal customers and offer discounts or exclusive access to future events. Small businesses had the punch cards that provide a free item on the 10th visit or purchase. Retailers have a reward system where customers earn cash back after reaching a purchase amount threshold. Airlines reward their frequent flyers with upgrades and early boarding. Others provide deep discounts to their most loyal customers.
Now what if the sports and event venues are able to connect with their patrons while they are in the event, identify and build a community with them, enhance the fan experience during and after the event, and offer rewards for the current and future events?
For example, at a sports event — patrons scan a QR code on their phones that takes them to a digital asset that is redeemable only while they are at the venue. This is possible through location-based digital assets. These are digital assets that are unlocked and redeemable only if the customer is within a certain radius of a tagged location.
Right there and then, after they redeem the digital asset, they get exclusive access to an after-party with their favorite sports celebrity, or are given an exclusive merchandise of their favorite team, or are offered a discount at a food merchant in the venue. The possibilities are endless! Loyalty rewards lay the foundations for a mechanism to gain insights about their patrons, market the appropriate future events and offer rewards to their loyal fans.
Digital assets can contain any type of data. Attributes like time, location and identity can be attached to it. It is a smart contract that defines what the digital asset represents, and the complete transaction history attached to it, secured and stored publicly on the blockchain. Utilizing location-based digital assets will allow sports and entertainment events to identify and reward patrons who are physically coming to their locations.
Location based digital assets can spur loyalty – and events are best positioned to take advantage of this innovative technology as they attract the next generation of digital first audience.