It is a difficult time for the sports industry. With the outbreak of COVID-19, seasons have come to a halt for the NHL, NBA, MLS, and MLB. At the end of the day, this will almost certainly mean a staggering loss of revenue. Teams, especially teams with a low profit margin, may be forced to cut costs dramatically. Departments, employees, and contractors may be called upon to justify their budgets or risk having them cut until the financials recover from the crisis. If you are in sports marketing research, this may be of great concern, since marketing research can easily be seen almost purely as a “cost” center for the team, rather than a “profit” center, and thus may be harder to justify in concrete numbers.
The truth is that marketing research can prove invaluable to your team, especially in times of adversity. Thinking of it in terms of cost or profit is incomplete. Marketing research is, in truth, a value center for your team. Here are some ways in which marketing research can add value to your team. Based on your sport, your market, and your team’s financial situation, think about how each of these could apply and keep them in mind when defending the continued need for a workable market research budget.
Market research provides value by allowing you to:
- Clarify problems and opportunities
- Lead to attracting more customers
- Identify changes that are occurring in the marketplace
- Both among consumers and competitors
- Identify the best alternatives to pursue among a set of proposed alternatives
- Help your team gain a competitive advantage
Value is an indispensable resource to have when facing setbacks. In this adverse time for sports (along with many other industries), it may end up making the difference between a team that exits this crisis thriving and one that leaves it limping.