There are loads of good sports business resources out there but many hide their best content behind a paywall. Here are nine essential and free resources that you should be following if you are in the business of sports…
#9: Sports Marketing and PR round-up
At number 9 on my list is Sports marketing and PR round-up, authored by marketing and PR industry veteran Joe Favorito. His focus is very much on the US sports marketing scene. This is no bad thing given many of the other titles in this list will provide insights from further afield. The related LinkedIn group has almost 35,000 members and is one of the most useful that I have found in terms of finding relevant sports marketing content and contacts.
Frequency: Every few days
Topics areas: Broad spectrum of sports marketing topics with focus on US sports
Recommended: “EGaming keeps its business push forward” (http://joefavorito.com/2015/04/02/e-gaming-keeps-its-business-push-forward/ )
#8: The Business of Sports blog
The remarkable thing about the Business of Sports blog, number 8 on my list, is that its driving force, Russell Scibetti, also has a day job. Scibetti’s blog, and the website at large, is particularly strong on areas such as technology, ticketing and CRM.
Frequency: At least twice weekly
Topics areas: Sports business with a focus on CRM, database marketing, technology and ticketing
Recommended: “Don’t forget about small data” (http://www.thebusinessofsports.com/2015/04/02/dont-forget-about-small-data/ ) and “Standing out in digital within sports” (http://www.thebusinessofsports.com/2015/03/26/standing-out-in-digital-within-sports/ )
#7: The one-to-one podcast (SportBusiness Group)
Produced by the SportBusiness Group, the one-to-one podcast is a clever re-purposing of interviews that are later published in full in SportBusiness International magazine and for this alone is deserving of 7th place. The podcasts are fairly short (10 – 15 minutes) but are a great companion for a short commute. Unlike most of the content offered by SportBusiness International, this is free!
Topic areas: Interviews with sports business leaders from all sectors
Recommended: Interview with Sergey Bubka (http://www.sportbusiness.com/sportbusiness-international/one-one-podcast-sergey-bubka )
#6: Overtime Sports Marketing blog
There are many sports marketing agencies blogging and in all cases it’s good to retain a level of scepticism about their objectivity. That said, I’ve not found a better agency blog than Overtime’s and its truly international to boot. The blog is generally topical, with lots of sports digital commentary, and worth checking out. Hence why I have it sits at number 6 on my list.
Frequency: At least twice weekly
Topics areas: Digital and social media marketing
Recommended: “Top 8 sports marketing people you should follow on Twitter” (http://promoovertime.com/top-8-sports-marketing-people-you-should-follow-on-twitter/ ) which features Russell Scibetti at number 1 and Sean Callanan at number 3!
#5: Sport Techie
Sporttechie.com, 5th on my rundown, is a great source of news and comment on the impact of technology on sport (and vice versa). There is no other resource that I am aware of that does it better.
Topics areas: Digital and social media, apps, sports science, venues and facilities (amongst others).
Recommended: “Real Madrid to debut their Microsoft-built App to 450 million fans” (http://www.sporttechie.com/2015/05/22/real-madrid-to-debut-their-microsoft-built-app-to-450-million-fans/ )
#4: Lawinsport.com blog
Similar to Sporttechie.com, sports business professionals are not the core target audience for this resource. Nevertheless, Lawinsport.com’s blog and website is a great way for anyone in the business of sports to keep an eye on the evolving (commercial) legal landscape. The blog, which sits in 4th place on my list, features contributions from over 20 different experts in different fields of sports law.
Frequency: Every few days
Topics areas: All aspects of sports law
Recommended: “New guidance on how clubs should treat social media misconduct by footballers” (http://www.lawinsport.com/blog/item/new-guidance-on-how-clubs-should-treat-social-media-misconduct-by-footballers?category_id=139 )
#3: Centre Circle (theconversation.com)
The conversation.com is a unique collaboration between academics and researchers publishing news and features on a range of topics direct to the public. Centre Circle, the sports business specific column within the website, is written by Simon Chadwick, Professor of Sport Business Strategy at Coventry University. Professor Chadwick brings an alternative perspective to the industry and as a result is high on my list at number 3.
Frequency: Approx. fortnightly
Topic areas: Business and management of sport
Recommended: “Review of the sporting year 2014” (https://theconversation.com/the-sporting-year-that-was-2014-and-the-one-that-lies-ahead-35580 )
#2: Power Sponsorship blog
Kim Skildum-Reid’s blog is written in a direct, entertaining and informative style. Her website, Powersponsorship.com, also has loads of great content from white papers to templates to cheat sheets which are available free of charge. Both the blog and the broader website are a must follow for sponsorship professionals and as a result, come in at 2nd place on my list.
Frequency: Weekly / fortnightly
Topics areas: Sponsorship
Recommended: “7 lies media tell about sponsorship” (http://powersponsorship.com/7-lies-media-tell-sponsorship/ ) and “Death to Beige sponsorship!” (http://powersponsorship.com/death-beige-sponsorship/ )
#1: The Sports Geek podcast
At the time of writing (May 2015), Sean Callanan (or the Sports Geek as he is otherwise known) had produced 87 podcasts. His podcasts have been downloaded from iTunes alone well in excess of 50,000 times. Callanan’s focus tends to be on sports digital marketing however his interviews with top sports industry professionals regularly extend into a broader sports business territory. Unlike other sports business podcasts that I’ve found, the Sports Geek has a truly international perspective and the sportsgeekhq.com website is also full of great information (including a very good blog). I owe Sean Callanan a debt of thanks for keeping me entertained and informed on my cycle to work. A great podcast and my top free resource for sports business professionals!
Topics areas: Sports business with a focus on digital marketing
Recommended: Interview with Mark Cuban, tech entrepreneur and Dallas Mavericks owner (https://itunes.apple.com/au/podcast/sports-geek-podcast-sports/id646632013?mt=2&ign-mpt=uo%3D4 )