A whole new ball game: Navigating digital transformation in the sports industry

Why undertake a digital transformation?
There is no question that technology has transformed, and will continue to transform, businesses across all industries, radically altering both the customer experience and the inner workings of organizations. The sports industry, in particular, is undergoing rapid upheaval, and digital technology is unlocking unprecedented opportunities for growth. In order to fully capitalize on those opportunities, however, sports organizations will likely need a digital overhaul. “Doing digital” is not enough: They will have to embed digital in every aspect of the business, transforming people, processes, and technology.
Going through any kind of organizational transformation is not to be taken lightly. But given the significant opportunities that exist for sports organizations, the undertaking is well worth considering. These opportunities fall into four categories.

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3 Ways Technology Has Changed the Sports Industry

1. Digital and Social Media

Because of improvements in technology, sports coverage is more extensive than ever before. Previously viewers had to select between a few channels to catch the game–now there are a plethora of options. Coverage is available everywhere, all the time. Plus–coverage is now available live and full-replay.

2. Buying Tickets

Not too long ago, buying sports tickets was sometimes a hassle. If you had extra tickets or you wanted to buy some, your only option was scalping. Trading or otherwise obtaining tickets was a costly process that took time and was not very efficient.
Now, however, sports fans are able to buy tickets online in a matter of minutes. New online platforms like Eventbrite have made it easy and convenient to check-in and coordinate the entire ticketing process, which entices more people to attend sporting events.

3. Equipment and Experience

Technology has entirely revolutionized the manner in which we are able to design apparel and equipment. From shoes and uniforms to gloves, helmets, and pads–sporting equipment is now more high-tech and high-functioning. The experience of going to a sporting event is very different, too. Scoreboards are now high-definition, fans have access to wireless internet, and recreational devices like batting cages and hitting machines have become more popular.

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