AST had the opportunity to exclusively speak to Leo MacLehose, CEO & Co-Founder of FANZO; a global fan activation platform consisting of an audience of highly targetable sports fans and 10,000 partner venues with a mission of “Bringing fans together to create unforgettable sporting memories.” MacLehose started MatchPint (now FANZO) while studying, to create a fan engagement platform for brands, broadcasters and rights holders.
FANZO believes that watching sports with friends is the ultimate social experience. They enable brands to elevate the experience of social sports viewing with through-the-line campaigns that are slick, frictionless, measurable and memorable. Their market leading technology helps rights-holders and broadcaster partners across the globe bring fans together to enjoy real social interaction, with sport at the beating heart of it.
AST: How is digital technology changing the behavior of sports fans? What are the trends that you are observing?
Leo: “Sport is no longer just about the consumption of live content, so many of the most malleable, innovative fan engagement opportunities live in the down periods between fixtures/events. It’s also the areas that are the most available for brands to activate around their chosen sports events.
From Fantasy and Predictors, to Trivia, gamification provides the opportunity for rights holders to engage more directly with fans, and create sponsorable experiences. Rights holders have very little direct engagement with their audiences, as they have mostly sold these on to the broadcasters. The size of their CRMs show very low audience penetration, as the only consistent source of fan data is their stadiums.”
AST: How do you see teams/ leagues/ broadcasters leveraging those trends to grow and monetize?
Richard: “In Asia, where there are a high number of fans, rights holders are increasingly understanding the importance of owning the relationship with their fans. It’s difficult to speak to fans in the home, as broadcasters own the large majority of those relationships, and therefore the data that flows from this space.
Out of Home (pubs, bars and fanzones) is an untapped and unconsolidated market, which rights holders and partners could exploit to access fans more directly. Creating opportunities for brands and partners to access data and deeper fan engagement in physical locations.””
AST: How is your platform increasing engagement for sports fans?
Richard: “FANZO is a website and app for sports fans used by 6 million fans every year. They use it quickly to find the perfect local sports venue that’s definitely showing their game on TV and organise their mates to join them.
FANZO believes that sport is only truly lived if it’s shared. Hence, the app contains a personalised sports calendar integration and TV Guide to ensure you never miss a game. Fans can play prediction games and sports quizzes on the app to unlock prizes such as free drinks, match tickets and money-can’t-buy fan experiences.”
AST is thankful to Leo & Fanzo for the deep industry insights.
Reach out to us to learn about how to leverage data, technologies, social media, and content to grow your fan base in Asia.