The Coronavirus pandemic has changed many variables throughout the world – from the business to the medical or jurisdictional field, people are adapting to changes at a very fast pace. Throughout many others, the sports industry has also been quite affected. College students have been prevented from competing, while professional athletes have experienced the same results.
Health is affected
It is important to look at sports health. That is because health drives money one way or another, in the end. Many testimonials and interviews have shown that coronavirus can quickly lead to pneumonia, which in return, leads to shortened breathing and thus, potential death. It was therefore important and necessary that sport leaders, owners, executives, and athletes follow the guidelines and stop playing/managing for a while. Many people thought that “being fit” or “being an athlete” will change the way in which the virus will affect you, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. The virus attacks everyone equally which is why it was important that sports stopped, and athletes rested.
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The business model has changed
If you don’t know how the sports model works, here is a quick overview. For the leagues, there are three main types of income that come in. Those are income from media and social media sales, income from sponsorships and other partnerships, and income from the day of the game (including tickets and other associated costs). Each one of the teams has its own autonomy and makes its own decisions – however, they are all dependent on the broadcasting (media and social media) channels to get funding. However, again, the differences stand out – each one of the sports will monetize in a different way, depending on their structural body as well as athlete performance. So, the more people watch the games, the more money comes in.
Most of the sports industry relies on broadcasting, so it was really challenging for this industry to change strategies. Their goal was, as you can tell, reaching out to the public in other ways, since live games had to stop broadcasting. Thus, most of the popular channels started streaming archived games and sports documentaries just to get the audience going. Live parties were also streamed during the quarantine, and the new Michael Jordan documentary is about to be released any minute. During these times, the sports industry must do whatever it can to keep fans engaged and active.
The strategies are important
One of the strategies that this industry adopted was increasing payment flexibility for users, media-wise. Many people have suffered greatly (especially financially) during these times, so the industry had to make an important change in that direction. If people had more time and fewer resources, the industry had to offer them more services and lower fees to engage them. You would be surprised at how many people signed up for streaming platforms at this time! However, the damage of not having live events anymore followed the sports business industry. Today, owners, professional athletes, and officials are worried that it might never recover. The strategies thus continue to remain of essential importance.
Another strategy that has been shown quite effective was finding reciprocal solutions to the problem, meaning finding solutions that would fit all parties involved. According to weforum.org, the solutions that they came up with were paying increased compensation to broadcasters and helping them with additional agreements and an extension of rights.
The last strategy implemented was expanding on a plan that would work without a live audience. As I mentioned, this plan was quite exhaustive and gave out results. However, the sports business industry needs to expand even further – executives are now looking to expand their outreach to Asia, picking countries such as Japan or China. Business owners are also looking to receive assignment help in Canada to ease up their job performance and thus, maximize efficiency. This would be a great opportunity to save the industry but also expand sports globally.
Long-term effects should be mentioned
Taking into account everything that has been presented here and looking towards a brighter future, long-term effects on the sports industry will also be discussed here. That is because we need to learn that COVID-19 has changed not only business and other economic branches but also mentalities. Thus, looking at how the audience and the executives will react and proceed from now on (as well as the industry as a whole) is essential. Here are a few brief points.
- The new business model should remain unchanged for a while and should produce more content and thus, money.
- Direct to consumer marketing or D2C will expand. Thus, consumers will have their needs fulfilled in less time – they will have increased access to sports content from now on at a lower price. The industry will, therefore, adopt a wider clientele.
- These changes will affect the broadcasters’ financial needs and the power that they now have to get sports rights. There will be an increase in the diversity of content streamed. Gamified viewership is something that will definitely follow.
- The virtual world will grow, and e-sports will become increasingly popular in the decade to come.
It is important that we understand the impact that COVID-19 has had on the sports business industry since we are also quite directly affected by it. In the business world, everything is connected in some sort of a Domino game. If one piece falls, the others will follow, so it is essential that we stay updated on the latest news.
Joshua Robinson is a freelancer and former athlete. His sports business experience made him develop a passion for the industry. Joshua’s passion is writing sports related content and publishing controversial material.