SportTechie: ECAL Beats The Inbox And Goes Right To The Calendar Of Sports Fans
Published by Logan Bradley; SportTechie, 5th July 2016.
Everybody has signed up for an email list at one point in their life and regretted it, it’s almost like a rite of passage. You end up deleting the majority of the messages you get and receive almost no benefit from subscribing.
In fact, according to Patrick Barrett, the CEO of ECAL, email open rates are as low as 5%. That’s why Barrett came up with the idea of delivering user-specific content directly to the consumer’s calendar. “Communications are always seen at the right time through the alerts and reminders that you set through the calendar,” said Barrett. “As opposed to hoping or waiting for someone to open their email.”
The goal of ECAL is to “beat the inbox,” as Barrett puts it, and to be able to communicate to their consumers when it’s most appropriate about the things that are most relevant. One of the reasons you will get content that is most relevant to you is because nobody knows your calendar address like they do your email. Due to this, nobody can spam you, and only you can control what information you select to have sent to your calendar.
ECAL works with a variety of leagues including the recently concluded COPA competition. “We delivered the digital match calendar for COPA,” said Barrett. “That was a very key tool for COPA in its business strategy.”
One of the key things that ECAL was able to do for COPA was build an audience for them very quickly, even before the tournament draw was released. Fans were able to choose their favorite team and have their entire schedule synced straight to their personal calendar. They also provided additional incentive for people to download the calendar by offering a chance to win two tickets to the official COPA draw in New York City.
That’s not all that ECAL offers through its partnership with multiple leagues and tournaments like COPA. They also provide the ability for fans to buy tickets in advance of their favorite team’s game. According to Barrett, through the use of the COPA ECAL, over $83,000 worth of tickets were bought.
COPA isn’t the only large soccer enterprise that ECAL associates with, they also just recently (June 15) launched the Premier League digital calendar. “What’s really important about that (the partnership) is that big brands like Premier League, COPA, MLS and others have calendar marketing as a key part of their marketing mix,” said Barrett.
Clients like the Premier League own the rights to the customer data that they get through the use of ECAL. They have instant, real-time access that they can sort and use to their benefit.
ECAL is based in Australia and works with pretty much every major league there, as well as in New Zealand. In the U.S. they work with Major League Soccer along with teams like the New England Patriots and Washington Redskins of the NFL and theBoston Celtics of the NBA. Given the globalization of ECAL, they do displays in 14 different languages by using widgets that have geo-detection technology to serve every market.
However, their biggest client in the U.S. isn’t a sports team, it’s Ticketmaster. “If you look at the Ticketmaster site for the U.S. now, every event for the U.S. has an ECAL enter calendar link on it,” explained Barrett.
He also said that partnering with Ticketmaster has pretty much doubled their purchase rate from tickets in the calendar.
The days of mindlessly sifting through emails in search of something relevant to you is over. Get exactly what you want and care about directly to your personal calendar with ECAL.
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