Miami Heat net higher sales with frictionless fan experience

The Miami Heat boosts fan engagement with mobile ticket entry and payment services, coupled with a burgeoning analytics strategy designed to provide a 360-degree view of each customer.

Miami Heat net higher sales with frictionless fan experience
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Smartphones are spoiling today's sports fans, many of whom rely on an array mobile apps to make their lives easier. The National Basketball Association's Miami Heat believes it has found the winning combination by enabling fans to breeze into AmericanAirlines Arena and make purchases with their mobile devices.

Fan-facing technology is driving better customer experiences (CX) for NBA teams, each of which gets at least 41 home games a year to surprise and delight fans, says Matthew Jafarian, executive vice president of business strategy for the Heat and AmericanAirlines Arena. The Heat also uses information collected through these digital transactions to personalize offers and identify top sales prospects, a critical tent pole in the organization's digital transformation, Jafarian says.

That data-driven approach spells a new strategy for the Heat. When Jafarian joined in 2017, the organization was reeling from the loss of superstars Lebron James, Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade, aka the Big Three, who together garnered four finals appearances from 2010 to 2014, including back-to-back NBA championships in 2012 and 2013.

Big Three era gives way to digital CX

With the Heat perennially contending in the postseason, the organization didn't need a sophisticated sales infrastructure. That changed when the Big Three left. The team's performance waned and season ticket sales, along with revenues generated from concessions and apparel retail, fell.

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