--> Case Study
Fans at Bank of the West Classic Use Phones to Get More out of the Live Event
The Bank of the West Classic, owned and operated by IMG, is the oldest women's-only professional tennis tournament in the world and is the first stop of the Olympus US Open Series. The tournament directors, continually looking for new ways to improve their fans' experience through new technology, recognized the need to engage their fans through mobile. They partnered with CrowdOptic, the makers of a fan-friendly mobile application that allows fans at live sporting events to point their phones at the players and retrieve a variety of real-time information about the players and the event. In partnering with CrowdOptic, the tournament organizers had three main goals:
CrowdOptic at 2011 the Bank of the West Classic Augmented reality app and photo sharing web site
- Enhance the live, in-venue experience for fans, by giving fans access to real-time information about the athletes simply by pointing their phones, and by giving fans a way to upload and share photos enhanced with this information;
- Gather and record analytical data on crowd behavior, such as which events and highlights during the tournament were the most photographed;
- Monetize a new communication platform by broadcasting special offers to in-stadium fans on their phones.
On July 25, 2011, The Bank of the West Classic deployed a next generation mobile application from CrowdOptic that allowed spectators in the stands at the event to see real-time information about the players displayed on their smartphones while they snapped photos of the players moving around the court. The tournament, hosted in Silicon Valley, became the first sporting event to debut next-generation "augmented reality" mobile technology that let fans view a range of real-time information including real-time match insight, ticket discounts, prizes and autograph signing invitations.
With very minimal IT integration with the event producers, CrowdOptic deployed a stand-alone architecture that tapped into existing Bank of the West Classic data feeds and was up and running within just hours. Fans were able to access the CrowdOptic-powered Bank of the West Classic app on the first day of tournament play and throughout the week-long tournament. Sam Henderson Director of Media and Public Relations IMG/Bank of The West Classic, said "We were happy to debut this new technology. It enhanced the fan experience and extended the Bank of the West message beyond the event."
- Providing the fans with an instant photo-sharing platform gave the tournament and its sponsors broader reach through their fans’ social networks and media. Photo sharing by users of the Bank of the West Classic app during the live event yielded over 4 photos taken and 32 photo impressions per user.
- There were over 3.5 Twitter links and 2.75 Twitter clicks generated per user at the event.
- Photos shared and viewed during the event took on incredible international breadth, with viewers from over 100 countries participating.
- The tournament was able to quantify its athletes’ star power and popularity with the crowd in real time based on crowd behavior and usage patterns, including their activity on Facebook and Twitter and their photo taking activity in the stands. For example, during Maria Sharapova’s first match, 220 photos were taken by CrowdOptic users. 140 (63%) photos were taken of Maria and 65 (30%) were taken of her opponent Daniela Hantuchova.
- The tournament’s most popular user-shared photo, of Maria Sharapova, was viewed 246 times by people from 22 countries.
- Bank of the West Classic better understood the drivers of event success and were able to respond in real time with appropriate messages, such as promoting ticket sales at the key moments when the fans were most tuned in.
"We were happy to debut this new technology. It enhanced the fan experience and extended the Bank of the West message beyond the event."
Director of Media and Public Relations, IMG World
For More Information:
For more information about CrowdOptic, please visit www.crowdoptic.com or email email@example.com.