The future of the sports events sector is already here, and it is set to transform the relationship between football clubs and their most important components, the fans. At a time in which the way in which we enjoy ‘the beautiful game’ has changed, thanks to video refereeing and the analysis of advanced player statistics (such as heat maps, kilometres run and possession turnover recovery), there has still been the need to change the antiquated relationship that clubs have with their season ticket holders, members and supporters.
In a sport with a century and a half of history, tradition carries too much weight when it comes to modernising football clubs and their operation. There are still clubs that each year require their fans to go to the ticket offices before the start of the season, queuing in order to renew their season ticket in person as the only method of undertaking the process.
Fortunately, most clubs now allow their members and supporters to perform most of their transactions online, such as hiring a guided tour of the stadium or buying additional tickets at a discount. However, the path of full technological integration remains the road less travelled for almost all clubs around the world,
In terms of technological improvements that are already a reality, biometrics is one of the great innovations that will provide an unequivocal added value to fans of any club that has opted to incorporate it into its services. Since many benefits of being a season ticket holder are based on a hierarchy of longevity is essential to verify the identity of the user.
Just as we already identify ourselves on our mobile phones through our face or fingerprint, biometric access to our club’s app will be a reality sooner rather than later. For example, imagine entering the stadium without having to wait in long lines and without even having to look for your card. This is one of the benefits that has been introduced on a large scale.
The possibilities open to football clubs to expand their brands and increase their turnover through an even closer relationship with their natural consumers are countless. The comfort for the fans is evident, since the waiting time to enter the stadium is reduced and this new way of communicating with the club safely is literally in their pocket.
Being able to launch segmented promotional campaigns, offer new products exclusively and have more personalised contact are among the multiple reasons for clubs to explore this path provided by technology in general and biometrics in particular.
FacePhi and Valencia CF have signed an agreement to implement a biometric access system to Mestalla. FacePhi previously cemented its strong presence in banking and other sectors, and brings its know-how to the world of sporting events for the first time.
Valencia CF have chosen this project as the winner of the ‘VCF Innovation Hub’ awards in the ‘Fan Engagement’ category.