Why Monterosa is the gold standard for fan engagement
“We want to bring fans to our own platform.” It’s a commonly heard refrain from sports rightsholders looking to wrestle the fan engagement experience from social media or third party platforms, onto their owned and operated websites and apps.
There are good reasons for this. Owning the relationship with a fan means building higher brand affinity, crucial zero and first-party data capture, engagement for sponsors, and ideally, monetisation. But to do all this effectively, digital products need to offer compelling experiences that bring fans in, and gamification that keeps them coming back.
Enter Monterosa – our newest member company.
One platform, continuous fan engagement
We've been tracking Monterosa for a while and in that time we've seen lots of companies try to nail digital fan engagement experiences. However, in the last 12 months we've seen Monterosa’s approach evolve, coinciding with an increase in market demand for their product, that’s led to them signing key clients including Liverpool FC, EA Sports, Six Nations, Formula E and plenty more household names.
“Typically sports rightsholder digital platforms have been built and added to over a period of time, often using multiple suppliers and developers,” says Monterosa co-founder and CEO, Tom McDonnell. “Not only can this approach be expensive in the long run, but it can also result in disconnected user experiences, multiple logins and siloed data – in terms of both the performance tracking of each interactive element, but also fan data capture.”
Monterosa’s ‘Interaction Cloud’ is a SaaS offering that brings together a suite of best in class digital experiences including event centres, predictor games, light fantasy, trivia, data visualisation and loyalty. These experiences can be adapted, scheduled, automated and tracked through a single dashboard, making it easy for rightsholders to spin up new activations for game days and throughout the week. For fans, this creates a seamless digital experience across web and app, while for rightsholders and their partners, it delivers multiple touch points with fans from which valuable insights can be gleaned.
Why it works
There are three key reasons why rightsholders use Monterosa to power their fan engagement: increased digital engagement and retention, better data capture, and the creation of new and engaging partnerships assets.
Building a stronger relationship with fans
Sports properties increasingly want to build stronger, more direct relationships with their fans, and see driving them to their own digital platforms as a key way to do so. But there needs to be a compelling reason for fans to visit their team's digital platform rather than Instagram or TikTok. This means using a mix of exclusive content to bring fans in, and gamification to keep them coming back.
Liverpool FC’s Match Centre is a great example of this. Powered by Monterosa, it provides a single destination for Liverpool’s global fanbase to follow everything that happens before, during and after games. Live video content is accompanied by a feed of match commentary, social posts and photos, alongside interactive features such as predictors, votes and quizzes. This helps to set the experience apart from the alternative ways to follow the game for those who can’t watch live.
Formula E is another example, having implemented gamified experiences into its app. Every race weekend, fans can compete in a Predictor game to show off their knowledge and win exclusive prizes. With points available at every race, it’s designed to incentivise season-long engagement and keep fans coming back.
Increasing the quality and quantity of fan data
Sports rightsholders all want to increase the quality and quantity of the fan data they collect. This enables more direct and personalised marketing, deeper engagement and greater monetisation. Monterosa’s gaming experiences, like those utilised by Liverpool and Formula E, encourage fans to log in to save their performance across a season or to enter competitions, thereby converting website visitors into registered fans. Sharing data in return for participation in these experiences is a trade fans understand and are willing to make.
“By helping our customers deliver their engagement experience through the platform, we can create incredibly detailed audience profiles which feed into the data stack in real-time,” says Tom. “This enriches the level of insight a sports property has on its fans, enabling marketing to be done with a deeper level of targeting and personalisation, and more value to be driven from commercial partners.”
Creating valuable sponsored assets
Monterosa’s digital experiences can be of significant value to sponsors in their own right too. Six Nations, for example, has used Monterosa’s predictor games to activate partnerships with the likes of Guinness and Breitling. These experiences sit on Six Nations’ digital platforms, but can also be syndicated to partners to use themselves. Equally, EA Sports chose to replicate its Player of the Match vote across the Premier League, Bundeslida and LaLiga.
“It’s really powerful for sports properties to be able to say to their partners: ‘run these same activations on your own digital platforms,’” says Tom. “It’s a great way for a partner to leverage your IP, and drive their own data capture and monetisation efforts. For EA as a sponsor to be the ones taking our tech to sports properties is a great indicator of the value of this approach.”
The future of fan engagement
So, what’s up next for Monterosa in 2024, besides debuting at the Sports Loft Showcase in May?
“Firstly, we’re opening up our Interaction Cloud to allow third party developers to create experiences that run through the Monterosa platform,” says Tom. “Expect to see minigames by indie developers that can be easily customised to fit a rightsholder’s brand. We’re thrilled with our partnership with Wave, the engagement studio out of Amsterdam.”
“We’re also taking fan profiles and giving them back to fans in a form that they can curate and share. Tracking their own preferences, performances, statuses and fan stories.”
As a fan myself, I feel a gap where it comes to expressing the nature of my passion for my team. I’m inspired by what we’re creating this year and can’t wait to see it in action.”
We’re incredibly excited to welcome Monterosa into Sports Loft, to deliver the next generation of such a core piece of the sports and media tech stack. To learn more about Monterosa, and how Sports Loft identifies the best technology companies serving the sports industry, drop us an email at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.