Four Creative Revenue Strategies for Your Organization: How you can continue to provide programming and promote engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic

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Right now, it’s unclear when traditional sports programming will resume. It’s time to pivot if you haven’t already, and figure out how your organization can continue to add value for your players and their families. Your customers (like all of us!) are sorely missing the game. But just because athletes can’t gather on the fields and courts doesn’t mean that there aren’t ways to provide them with meaningful experiences—and generate revenue in turn. People are looking for ways to stay connected, perhaps more than ever before. 

 

We hosted a LeagueApps Learning virtual event to highlight what some of our partners are doing to drive engagement, focusing on virtual programming, fundraising, and social media.  We were joined by panelists Jesse Winter, President and CEO at LevelUp LI basketball, and Ian Hughes, National Technical Director at Steel Soccer. Read on to learn more about their strategies and how you can leverage the LeagueApps platform to generate revenue during the COVID-19 crisis.

 

Strategy #1: Virtual Training

 

Virtual training is a great way to keep players engaged physically, mentally, and emotionally, while also improving their knowledge of the game.

 

What they’re doing

Hughes explained that at Steel Soccer, they’ve leveraged different technology platforms to develop an integrated virtual training program focused on three key pillars: fitness and technical practice, player development, and continued coach communication. The curriculum is shared with participants weekly via email.

 

LevelUp LI, on the other hand, has been leaning into social media. Winter said that they’ve been posting drills of the day on their social channels and encouraging players to record themselves doing the drills at home—tagging the club and their teammates and friends. In addition, they’re hosting classes on Instagram Live. Adoption has been impressive: 50 to 100 kids have been posting each day, and classes have seen attendance reach 300 viewers. 

 

#DrillOfTheDay – @levelup_li

See Instagram ‘#DrillOfTheDay’ highlights from Level Up LI (@levelup_li)


What to know

The Steel team films modules using WebinarJam and hosts them on a platform called Teachable. Through Formsite, coaches can ask questions of players and test to see what they’ve learned to ensure they are completing the modules. Through the modules, players are assigned tasks to do, which are then reported back to their coaches. When it comes to communication, Steel’s coaches have sent player evaluation forms to families and are holding individual conference calls with them using Zoom. In addition, they will be holding team meetings to maintain relationships and address tactical, technical, physical, and psychological components. At the end of the week, each player completes an individual log so that coaches can see what they’ve been doing.

 

Strategy #2: Fundraising & Donations

 

Many people are looking for ways to help those impacted by COVID-19. Launching a fundraiser or donation campaign is one way to keep your community involved and offer assistance.

 

What they’re doing 

Winter worked with the LeagueApps team to organize a fundraising campaign with a gala planned for May. We helped him develop a digital strategy highlighting the club’s unique value proposition—an essential ingredient to a successful fundraiser. Due to the Coronavirus, Winter has decided to postpone the launch of the fundraiser—but for organizations that may be interested in launching this kind of campaign, here are a few things he suggests: tell your story, tie everything back to your brand mission and purpose, and be transparent about where the funds go. 

 

What to know

It’s simple to use the LeagueApps eCommerce Product tool to launch a donation page. Here’s an example setup of a donation page.

 

Strategy #3: Gift Cards & Credits 

 

What they’re doing

It’s likely that a number of your parents or players have already paid their registration fees—and that you’re depending on this money to help you cover your business expenses now and in the coming months as you rebound from this crisis. So what’s a strategy for handling requests for refunds? We’ve seen many of our partners issuing credits for use towards future programs instead of refunding participants; some have even issued an amount greater than the value of the refund as an act of goodwill. Another tactic to generate new revenue is to launch a Gift Card campaign, where a gift card can be bought and then transitioned into credit to be used in the future. 

 

What to know

You can use LeagueApps to make gift cards available for purchase, designating specific card amounts just like you’d see from a retailer. Once you do that, for example, a family member can purchase a $100 gift card that can then be applied toward future programming. 

 

Strategy #4: Esports

 

What they’re doing

Now’s the time to get creative. Many of our partners have been holding esports tournaments, such as NBA 2K or FIFA, as a way to keep players engaged in some friendly competition. (After all, many of your athletes are probably already spending some of their free time playing video games—requiring little education on your part.) Some of our partners are even broadcasting their tournaments live on Facebook.

 

What to know

It’s easy to use LeagueApps to set up an esports tournament registration—just follow the same steps you would when launching a traditional tournament.  

 

Additionally, you can include the rules of the tournament and highlight the prize. For a youth tournament, we recommend having players register as free agents (individuals). However, for an adult tournament, it’s better to have a captain register for the team. 

 

Did you find these tips and ideas helpful? We’ll be sharing more on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, and encourage you to visit events.leagueapps.com to RSVP for future events.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

LeagueApps

This piece was written by a member of the LeagueApps content team.
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