Many people are now familiar with QR codes and how they get scanned through “smart phones.” Some people in the sports world even are aware that a QR code can be modified to have the same background as the team colors or even include a smaller team logo in the center of the code.
The only problem is….
…. very few sports teams and leagues know how to use these to make money other than just sending people to the home page IN HOPES of buying more tickets!
It is time for sports teams to “lead the pack” and derive actual revenues and increase profits by using these codes intelligently. The first thing we need to do is to bust some myths about QR codes:
- “You are only allowed to have one QR code” — FALSE
- “You should always send a QR code to your home page” — FALSE
- “You only can use QR codes to send people to a link on the internet” — FALSE, although it is the most traditional use
- “They only can be used in the physical/real world” — FALSE
How Sports Teams Can Use QR Codes To Make Money!
As a sports business executive, understanding the growing emotional attachment people have with their smart phones is imperative. Here are some things you can do with any of the QR codes you create:
- Send the visitor to your team or league home page
- Send the visitor to a page on your website other than the home page, especially one that “adds value”
- Send the visitor to one of your social media properties (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.)
- Send the visitor to a page to leave a review about your team (e.g. sending a happy fan to the team’s page on Yelp in order to leave a positive review)
- Download a team mobile application
- Send a vCard or other contact information
- Send the team to a website where you have a revenue stream embedded that meets the need of the person scanning the code
- Promote your high-level sponsors on promotional items or during between-inning/intermission time periods
- Participate on a Twitter “hash tag” discussion
- Many more uses – please contact us to find out more
Some new QR technology allows you to send the visitor to an “intermediary” page permitting you to change out the final destination. For example, you may place a QR code on a team photo poster which gets distributed around town; but you think that you may want to feature the “player of the week” as the incentive to get people to scan the QR code.
You then can direct the QR code to point to the “intermediary” link, and your staff can change out the end destination page each week in order to fulfill the promise you made to the person looking at the poster. This keeps you in the good graces of local fans who demand more integrity from ALL businesses in the local area, not just sports teams.
“My Team Needs Actual Money. QR Codes Are Great, But How Do I Put Money In My Sports Team’s Coffers Without Selling Another Ticket?!?”
This is a great question!
The answer is that you need to meet the needs of specific audiences who are likely to take some sort of action that:
- meets THEIR needs (this is first and foremost!!)
- doesn’t cost your sports team anything
- gives you a commission or other credit which directly (or indirectly) puts money in your team’s bank account
If you scroll back up to the top of the page and scan the QR code, you will be taken to a digital e-book/course product to help baseball players improve their 60-yard dash times. I do not own this product, nor do I know the product creator. So how do I make money now that the page promoting his course is on YOUR smart phone?!?
The answer is that the product creator is offering his product through a digital retailer which allows me to become an “affiliate”. I signed up for free through the “middle man” retailer, and they provided me a tracking link. I then converted this tracking link into a specific QR code. If anyone clicks that link (on the website, through a QR code, through social media, etc.) and the person buys the product then I earn a commission of 50% of the post-fee purchase price. At $29, the post-fee amount is roughly $26. I would earn around $13 for the sale of this product bought through my tracking link.
The QR code now can be:
- put on a team’s website, ideally the “open tryouts” page
- handed to players as they register for a team’s open tryouts or private workouts
- handed to players who didn’t get signed out of the tryout because they were too slow
- Talk about meeting the needs of prospective customers who are in pain!! Imagine that you wanted to play pro baseball but didn’t make it out of the tryout because you ran a 7.1 second 60 yard dash. The team hands you a QR code that you scan on the way back to the car. You get helpful information and the team gets roughly $13 for “adding value” to this very specific audience
- market through online sites, such as articles about becoming a pro baseball player
- through college baseball coaches who pass the code (or otherwise share your tracking link) with the players
- any ethical way to get this information in the hands of a likely audience who needs the information
This is just a SMALL sample of what can be done with QR codes to put money in your team’s bank account without selling one more ticket or hot dog!
Think about what your fans need in their daily lives. They will need:
- home repair services
- restaurant coupons to save money
- trivia about your particular sport
- weight loss information
- relationship help
- saving money on car problems
- help making extra money
Get into the heads of your fans, both those who attend games as well as those who are fans from afar (online radio, website visitors outside of your area), and figure out what THEY need. Then find products and services which offer your team an incentive to promote the particular web page. You can get tracking links (or banner ads) that are free to create and promote.
The tracking links can be crafted into QR codes and distributed to your fans via:
- the footer of every night’s news items
- the sidebar of the team website for any unsold inventory spots
- pocket schedules and team posters which get distributed around town
- game programs for unsold inventory
- promotional items
- baseball cards
- handouts given to fans when they come into the stadium
- ticket backs if there is enough space
- online ticket purchases
- team merchandise
Since fans are becoming more demanding, and since they have more entertainment options, do whatever you can to promote the QR code that makes you money in a fun and/or helpful way. Currently, all independent professional baseball teams have a page which they can monetize with per-click ads; and each team receives a daily trivia question shared by all teams and league offices.
Teams can promote the QR code during games by handing out the code and instructing fans to scan the code every day for a new trivia question. The page containing the daily trivia question has ads above and below the trivia so fans can see them; but the fans still get “value” first… and they even may share/re-tweet the page with your ads to their friends. This enhances the likelihood that you can make money from around the country without having to get an extra paying “butt in the seat!”
Please contact us for specific information about using QR codes properly to bring in more fans, increase ticket sales AND brand new ways to make money without having to sell an extra ticket or a hot dog.