The 2015 #sportsbiz year in 10 top blog posts

I’ve picked out 10 excellent blogs that illustrate very well the current agenda on the commercial side of sport. 2015 was a year in which China announced its intentions to dominate the sports business, governance and transparency were never far from the headlines, over-the-top made giant strides and daily fantasy sports exploded. The 10 posts below also give us an excellent insight into what we can expect from 2016.

Simon Chadwick & David Pierce Jan 28

Inside the studio where ESPN is betting billions on the future of sports | The Verge | David Pierce

Despite ESPN’s subsequent and widely reported challenges in recapturing the millennial audience, this in-depth article nicely illustrated how ESPN and other broadcasters are investing in technology to shape the way we will consume sports content for years to come.


China’s financial muscle makes its mark on the global sport industry | The Conversation | Simon Chadwick

Since this piece focusing on China’s ambitions to build its influence in the sports business was published, China has continued to strengthen its position and is set to become a major power in the industry.

Bregman Mar 26

Standing out in digital within sports | The Business of Sports | Lisa Bregman and Cristi Zuk

In this guest post on the excellent Business of Sports, Lisa and Cristi (from Wasserman Media Group’s Digital team) made a convenient summary of their learnings (with a focus on “standing out in digital”) from the 2015 edition of the popular and trendsetting SXSW conference.

Lippard May 8

3 Marketing Lessons from Major League Baseball | GMR Blog | Adam Lippard

In this post, GMR’s Adam Lippard, drawing parallels with the success of the MLB, offered advice to “traditional” property holders in terms of how they need to evolve to unlock greater value for today’s sponsors.

Andrews Aug 4

Time Is Now for Rightsholders to Embrace Digital Platforms and Develop Content for Them | IEG Sponsorship Blog | Jim Andrews

In this piece, Jim Andrews highlighted some key take outs from Sir Martin Sorrells address to the IOC (itself a big sportsbiz event of the year) including many digital and media consumption trends which illustrate why property holders need to look to digital as a driver of value for fans and sponsors.

Ghosh Aug 11

The economic behemoth of fantasy football | The Fields of Green | Apratim Ghosh

Apratim, in this article, put into perspective the significance of (daily) fantasy sports as a revenue opportunity for sports properties and looked at the NFL’s relationship with fantasy. Since this was written, daily fantasy sports faces a less certain future in the US.

Harmon Oct 19

Governance and fans: Seattle Sounders framework of transparency and accountability | Sports Business Today | Shane Harmon

In this post, Shane brilliantly explained the Seattle Sounders approach to fan-driven governance and reminded us all that fans are the difference between pro and amateur sport. Leadership teams across the sports industry would be wise to study the Sounders model (and read this article!).

Harmon Oct 27

Sports tech: rights holders and venues as incubators, accelerators and startups | Sports Business Today | Shane Harmon

2015 saw an increasing number of sports properties taking a leading position in driving innovation and in turn exploring new revenue opportunities. This trend, which is reflective of a broader co-creation trend, is surely set to continue. This is an extremely insightful article from Shane.

Pierce Oct 28

Behind The Scenes of The Internet’s First Football Game | Wired | David Pierce

Irrespective of your opinion on the viewing figures for the Jacksonville Jaguars vs Buffalo Bills NFL match, no one can deny that the Yahoo! global live stream will change perceptions inside the sports business in terms of what is now technologically feasible. This piece gives a great overview of what it took for Yahoo! to deliver this service.

Kiernan Nov 18

No Other Sports Organization In The World Is More Technologically Impressive Than The Golden State Warriors | | Tim Kiernan

In this final post in my rundown, Tim Kiernan of sporttechie described very well how a tech-savvy leadership team, tech-hungry fans and a location near Silicon Valley have combined to create a leading sports franchise on and off the court.


About the author of this post:

David is a Chartered Marketer with more than 15 years’ experience in international sports marketing roles. You can follow David on twitter @davidgfowler or connect on LinkedIn at

The author had no professional relationship with any companies or individuals featured in this list at the time of writing. All opinions are based purely on personal, rather than professional, opinion.

If you liked this, you might also like: the 2015 #sponsorship year in 8 top blog posts


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