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Randy



Joined: 08 Oct 2011
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PostPosted: 06/29/17 6:20 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

ESPN ratings are pretty easy to manipulate by scheduling. If they want them to go up, they put the game on ESPN, ESPN2 after something with large viewership. They want them to go down, they never go on ESPN and schedule on ESPN2 after 10 pm following something like World's Strongest Man.


josephkramer44



Joined: 23 Aug 2016
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PostPosted: 06/29/17 9:22 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

The big question here is will the league ever be able to move above and beyond what it is now? No, the league is not in any danger of folding. However a whole lot of people (not just punks like Mr. Arenas or spiteful vindictive people like D. Schlussel) see the league as a cause rather than a legitimate sport product. The status quo can't be acceptable to the vast majority of fans (or the players and owners).
I think most people find the product a good product, but from what I can tell it doesn't seem that the atmosphere and outreach is very appealing to a whole lot of people. Which is too bad. A lot of people would benefit if the WNBA did better for itself (that excellent subject post on this very board is a good indicator) and it would hurt absolutely no one at the same time.


Randy



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PostPosted: 06/29/17 9:26 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Seeing the league as a "cause" may actually help with sponsorship (Corporations feeling like they are doing a good deed and getting good PR from it) but doesn't necessarily make people want to go to games. People who are into the "cause" (which is ill defined) or causes in general may simply not be into sports that much. People who are into sports may not be that into causes.

Maybe this is just a reflection of me (and my small self centered world). Last thing I'm thinking about when going to a game is to help a cause. Sorry it that's selfish of me.


WNBA 09



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 10:55 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Randy wrote:
Seeing the league as a "cause" may actually help with sponsorship (Corporations feeling like they are doing a good deed and getting good PR from it) but doesn't necessarily make people want to go to games. People who are into the "cause" (which is ill defined) or causes in general may simply not be into sports that much. People who are into sports may not be that into causes.

Maybe this is just a reflection of me (and my small self centered world). Last thing I'm thinking about when going to a game is to help a cause. Sorry it that's selfish of me.


Someone get this genius an application asap #RandyForFrontOffice . Idea Exclamation Idea



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Randy



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 11:07 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Thanks WNBA09. I think I'll get one of those applications. I have a great marketing idea. How about videos of players laughing and rolling eyes after a ref makes a call they don't like:

"Watch me Smirk"


WNBA 09



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 11:18 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Randy wrote:
Thanks WNBA09. I think I'll get one of those applications. I have a great marketing idea. How about videos of players laughing and rolling eyes after a ref makes a call they don't like:

"Watch me Smirk"



I almost sh*t my pants omg #PostOftheYear

#WatchMeSmirk why do i see Kelsey Plum all over that AD Laughing



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ClayK



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 11:29 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

josephkramer44 wrote:
The status quo can't be acceptable to the vast majority of fans (or the players and owners).


And why not?

And if it isn't, then what can be done to improve its status? You mentioned poor marketing earlier -- fine, so what would be better marketing?

And is marketing so powerful that it will increase ratings and attendance by itself?



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Shades



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 1:35 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Status quo = relatively cheap tickets and cheap League Pass. Lots of fans probably love the status quo, but don't realize it. Personally I don't need millions of other people to love the WNBA to validate my love for it.



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Randy



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 2:48 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Exactly - I only go to a few Hawks games a year. For the few times I go, it probably costs as much as a Dream Season ticket if not more. I don't like fighting crowds, scrambling for parking, etc that goes with the Hawks. And with the exception of one season a few years ago, the Hawks are one of the worst drawing NBA teams with some of the lowest prices. Imagine what an NBA that is successful might cost. You can love the game even if not many others do.


calbearman76



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 4:02 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

The biggest problem I see on the horizon is when their contract with ESPN expires in 2022. The current contract was signed in 2013 when sports rights fees were sky high. In the current environment I doubt that the revenue will be sustainable unless they get their viewership up over 250,000 where they were in 2011 (which would be a 40% increase from where they are now.) Their rights fees are a drop in the bucket to ESPN/Disney but any decrease would be difficult for some teams to swallow.

Expansion will help TV ratings but also cause the money to be split more ways. I agree that substantial dilution of talent (by going to 16 teams) would hurt, but having teams in larger markets like the Bay Area and in Philadelphia (where there is stronger than average interest in Women's college basketball but seemingly no interest from the 76'ers) could help. It would be interesting to see how the TV numbers vary from city to city.

The biggest complicating factor is that there seems to be more money for players overseas than in the US. That makes it difficult for teams to control their largest cost without dramatically impacting the quality of play.


Luuuc



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PostPosted: 06/30/17 7:39 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Shades wrote:
Status quo = relatively cheap tickets and cheap League Pass. Lots of fans probably love the status quo, but don't realize it. Personally I don't need millions of other people to love the WNBA to validate my love for it.

Status quo = cheaper tickets, due to demand not being as high as it used to be. Not that many fans these days. Still in venues all over the place, but the average person probably has no idea (if as many people were as knowledgeable as pilight, that situation would be quite different). Way bigger in the early years. Arguably far more popular with Europeans than Americans.
I agree that plenty of people like the status quo without knowing it, because a lot of their songs have reached iconic level and been recycled and reused over the years.



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scowl



Joined: 25 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: 07/03/17 11:23 am    ::: Re: Bad League Management and Bad Team Management Reply Reply with quote

MuneravenMN wrote:
Caveat: Soccer is a different beast. BUT...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/soccer-insider/wp/2017/06/24/portland-thorns-fan-support-is-unlike-anything-else-in-womens-soccer/?utm_term=.252b13044f33

So why is women's soccer in Portland attracting big crowds of rabid fans while the WNBA can't even sustain the interest of people who want to be rabid fans?


People here in Portland will go to anything with soccer. The MLS team has a season ticket waiting list of almost 10,000 names. The Thorns were a way to get some of those people to soccer matches who otherwise couldn't get into the sold-out Timber matches. They're expanding Providence Park to add 4,000 more seats and even that won't help much.

Soccer fits Portland's culture well. People can drink beer and talk without paying too much attention to what's happening on the field until people start cheering. You have to pay attention to what's happening in basketball or you'll miss something.


Randy



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PostPosted: 07/03/17 11:27 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Luuuc wrote:
Shades wrote:
Status quo = relatively cheap tickets and cheap League Pass. Lots of fans probably love the status quo, but don't realize it. Personally I don't need millions of other people to love the WNBA to validate my love for it.

Status quo = cheaper tickets, due to demand not being as high as it used to be. Not that many fans these days. Still in venues all over the place, but the average person probably has no idea (if as many people were as knowledgeable as pilight, that situation would be quite different). Way bigger in the early years. Arguably far more popular with Europeans than Americans.
I agree that plenty of people like the status quo without knowing it, because a lot of their songs have reached iconic level and been recycled and reused over the years.


But wasn't that mostly because lots of tickets were being given away. Of course, teams are giving away tickets now, but not as many? Of do they give away as many now and people no longer care enough about it to come to the games?


Richyyy



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PostPosted: 07/03/17 12:50 pm    ::: Re: Bad League Management and Bad Team Management Reply Reply with quote

scowl wrote:
People here in Portland will go to anything with soccer. The MLS team has a season ticket waiting list of almost 10,000 names. The Thorns were a way to get some of those people to soccer matches who otherwise couldn't get into the sold-out Timber matches. They're expanding Providence Park to add 4,000 more seats and even that won't help much.

Soccer fits Portland's culture well. People can drink beer and talk without paying too much attention to what's happening on the field until people start cheering. You have to pay attention to what's happening in basketball or you'll miss something.

The alternative perspective would be that if you stop paying attention and miss something in a soccer match, you may well have missed something meaningful. In basketball, if you drift off and miss a bucket or two, there'll be another one along in a minute anyway. [/British angle] Wink.



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Luuuc



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PostPosted: 07/03/17 6:48 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Randy wrote:
Luuuc wrote:
Shades wrote:
Status quo = relatively cheap tickets and cheap League Pass. Lots of fans probably love the status quo, but don't realize it. Personally I don't need millions of other people to love the WNBA to validate my love for it.

Status quo = cheaper tickets, due to demand not being as high as it used to be. Not that many fans these days. Still in venues all over the place, but the average person probably has no idea (if as many people were as knowledgeable as pilight, that situation would be quite different). Way bigger in the early years. Arguably far more popular with Europeans than Americans.
I agree that plenty of people like the status quo without knowing it, because a lot of their songs have reached iconic level and been recycled and reused over the years.


But wasn't that mostly because lots of tickets were being given away. Of course, teams are giving away tickets now, but not as many? Of do they give away as many now and people no longer care enough about it to come to the games?

Sorry I think you and I are referring to different things



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Randy



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PostPosted: 07/03/17 7:23 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I think I finally get it. I did find the part about songs confusing though the first time through but didn't give it much thought. Embarassed


josephkramer44



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PostPosted: 07/04/17 12:09 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

When I say the status quo I am referring only to the financial and business side of the league. It's obvious the league is doing its best to put on a great show and performance for its core fans (which is after all what a sporting event should be) and no one can deny that.
However from a business perspective when teams are being relegated to 4,200 seat arenas in shady areas, when premier players are being paid to skip the season by Russian mobsters, when teams are still in constant danger of folding or relocating and when premier teams are giving away hundreds (if not thousands) of free tickets and still not filling seats there is a problem with the financial and business part of the status quo.
I'm going to wait until the end of the season and playoffs to come to solid conclusions (I should have enough data by then) but I think its going to be some variation of the WNBA needs to do more to appeal to men (most of us are not sexist unenlightened barbarians) in a way that makes the WNBA fun for men, rather than a chore or a civic duty. Many of the outreach attempts I have studied by both the league and the individual teams seem to have the opposite effect. They could also do a few other things more effectively as well.
I have tried to write this post carefully and without insulting anyone. I don't want to rain on anyone's parade. The world would be pretty boring if everyone liked the same stuff and felt the same way about everything so I think it is awesome that there are so many different choices for sports entertainment in the US now. But will the WNBA ever be economically viable is still a legitimate question.


ClayK



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PostPosted: 07/04/17 11:22 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

josephkramer44 wrote:
When I say the status quo I am referring only to the financial and business side of the league. It's obvious the league is doing its best to put on a great show and performance for its core fans (which is after all what a sporting event should be) and no one can deny that.
However from a business perspective when teams are being relegated to 4,200 seat arenas in shady areas, when premier players are being paid to skip the season by Russian mobsters, when teams are still in constant danger of folding or relocating and when premier teams are giving away hundreds (if not thousands) of free tickets and still not filling seats there is a problem with the financial and business part of the status quo.
I'm going to wait until the end of the season and playoffs to come to solid conclusions (I should have enough data by then) but I think its going to be some variation of the WNBA needs to do more to appeal to men (most of us are not sexist unenlightened barbarians) in a way that makes the WNBA fun for men, rather than a chore or a civic duty. Many of the outreach attempts I have studied by both the league and the individual teams seem to have the opposite effect. They could also do a few other things more effectively as well.
I have tried to write this post carefully and without insulting anyone. I don't want to rain on anyone's parade. The world would be pretty boring if everyone liked the same stuff and felt the same way about everything so I think it is awesome that there are so many different choices for sports entertainment in the US now. But will the WNBA ever be economically viable is still a legitimate question.


I agree with what you're saying, but I remain unconvinced that better marketing can make a substantial difference.

Male basketball fans have been exposed to females playing basketball since elementary school, and they have very likely seen high school and college games in person (if only in passing). How can marketing move the needle? It would seem to me the product is the issue, not the ad campaign.



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scowl



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PostPosted: 07/04/17 11:12 pm    ::: Re: Bad League Management and Bad Team Management Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
The alternative perspective would be that if you stop paying attention and miss something in a soccer match, you may well have missed something meaningful. [/British angle] Wink.

Most of the time when it looks like our team has a chance of scoring, everyone stops socializing and starts cheering. We don't scream during the whole match like most soccer fans in the world do.


josephkramer44



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PostPosted: 07/05/17 6:41 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

You might be right. IF the current numbers remain unchanged after the season is done, which are significantly worse than last year after one of the biggest marketing campaigns in the league's history (and Border's claims of unbridled success) then either a completely new message is needed or the WNBA has reached the peak of what it can ever hope to be (at least for the foreseeable future). I'm certainly no Nostradamous so I don't claim to have all the answers, but I don't buy a fairly standard argument that the WNBA is failing because men are all sexist insecure pigs (obviously not everyone says that but a lot of people do feel that way).


ClayK



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PostPosted: 07/05/17 7:49 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

josephkramer44 wrote:
You might be right. IF the current numbers remain unchanged after the season is done, which are significantly worse than last year after one of the biggest marketing campaigns in the league's history (and Border's claims of unbridled success) then either a completely new message is needed or the WNBA has reached the peak of what it can ever hope to be (at least for the foreseeable future). I'm certainly no Nostradamous so I don't claim to have all the answers, but I don't buy a fairly standard argument that the WNBA is failing because men are all sexist insecure pigs (obviously not everyone says that but a lot of people do feel that way).


So what should the new message be? Since most have already seen the product, what can be altered to get them to watch it more often?



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awhom111



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PostPosted: 07/07/17 7:52 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Back to TV ratings:
Sparks-Lynx averaged 249,000 viewers. For those who wanted it on ESPN, the softball game averaged 362,000 and the tape delayed track and field meet that aired during the latter portion of the game averaged 380,000 viewers.
sportsfan48



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PostPosted: 07/08/17 2:39 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I have DISH tv and the WNBA is not listed under the sports search. In fact, I have a difficult time finding WNBA at all. I wonder if this is the case for other tv providers like Time/Warner, Cox, etc.

Maybe the league could start by getting the tv providers to include the WNBA in their sports search options. It couldn't hurt.


josephkramer44



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PostPosted: 07/11/17 11:12 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

ClayK wrote:
josephkramer44 wrote:
You might be right. IF the current numbers remain unchanged after the season is done, which are significantly worse than last year after one of the biggest marketing campaigns in the league's history (and Border's claims of unbridled success) then either a completely new message is needed or the WNBA has reached the peak of what it can ever hope to be (at least for the foreseeable future). I'm certainly no Nostradamous so I don't claim to have all the answers, but I don't buy a fairly standard argument that the WNBA is failing because men are all sexist insecure pigs (obviously not everyone says that but a lot of people do feel that way).


So what should the new message be? Since most have already seen the product, what can be altered to get them to watch it more often?



I have discovered one of the reasons a lot of people don't care for the WNBA is the fact that it is dependent upon subsidies from the NBA. "You call it a subsidy, I call it charity" is how one person I asked responded. The linking of the WNBA with the NBA in advertisement and events and so on actually has an opposite effect. "If I can't get paid to do what I love because it isn't profitable then why should they (the players in the WNBA) be able to?" It is a bit on the bitter side but there is some truth to these statements.

I am of an opinion that the linking of the two leagues certainly hurts a league which is crying out for acknowledgement, legitimacy and respect from the public. The best thing to do would be a completely new branding. Wait for the end of this season and begin plans.

Do a campaign about the New and Improved Hip WNBA (hopefully they can come up with a better title than that). Have the NBA linked teams do new uniforms and logos. If practical find different arenas than the larger NBA arenas. The sight of blacked out upper decks and swathes of empty seats for even the most popular teams is a PR disaster. I have a few more thoughts towards a better marketing campaign but will wait to publish those in a different thread (I have already gotten off topic here).


pilight



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PostPosted: 07/12/17 8:12 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

josephkramer44 wrote:
I have discovered one of the reasons a lot of people don't care for the WNBA is the fact that it is dependent upon subsidies from the NBA. "You call it a subsidy, I call it charity" is how one person I asked responded. The linking of the WNBA with the NBA in advertisement and events and so on actually has an opposite effect. "If I can't get paid to do what I love because it isn't profitable then why should they (the players in the WNBA) be able to?" It is a bit on the bitter side but there is some truth to these statements.


That's not the real reason they're not watching. That's just the business casual version of misogyny. The D-league is not profitable, but no one makes similar complaints about it.



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