Monday, June 06, 2011

10,000 Fans Can't Be Wrong

Real-time reporting from live events is nothing new. Whether telegraph or Internet, people want to know what is happening, and if possible, they want to know right now. Technology changes; human nature doesn't.

This is the core reason behind my early adaptation of Twitter and then CoverItLive to connect with athletic fans. Add the mobile aspect - no matter where they are, they can be with your team - and this is the ultimate bonding tool. (Remember, it's about building a brand into a bond; fans into friends.)

Need further proof of the theory? Record setting weekend at the NCAA Regionals for baseball, peaking with 1,079 current moment and total CiL participation of 10,992 for the final versus Arizona State. In the stands, there were around 2,000.

All weekend, Arkansas had more people on-line than were real head count in the stands - 756 moment/7,824 total for the Charlotte second game and about 350 in the stands Sunday afternoon as an example.

The four-game weekend netted 29,396. Certainly aided by a lack of any TV and streaming video only that was technically challenged on a couple of days, the blog exploded.

We have four dates left - NCAA Outdoor - but year-to-date, 216,391 participants and 83,910 more via replay in all sports at Arkansas. If it was a single sport attendance, it would rank third behind football and baseball. As a percentage of the overall, it is about 19%.

That is extending your range with the fan base, and a pretty consistent number if you commit to the concept - it takes a few weeks for fans to get use to it and come to depend on it. We made that time investment last year to build the core sports, and with a few sports we did not this year and they struggled.

1 comment:

Benny T said...


Great stuff! We at Illinois have only dipped our toe into the CiL pool with inconsistent offerings of blogs, but with only a few hours' notice, we got 320 total readers for our first game of the Fullerton Regional (which was live on ESPNU & started at 10 pm Central time, by the way). The next day, we had 498 and for two games on Sunday, we had 2,424, which was the fourth-highest blog total that we've ever done (behind two FB signing days and a men's basketball game in the Big Ten Tournament). I agree wholeheartedly on doing live blogs. I think it's something we at Illinois need to jump into completely!