MCG ramps up technology spend to improve fan engagement

New Wi-Fi network and IPTV rollout in 2015 is part of a $45m investment into improving connectivity in the stadium

Melbourne Cricket Ground - IPTV screens
Melbourne Cricket Ground - IPTV screens

The Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) is rolling out a new high-density Wi-Fi network and IPTV digital offering in a bid to improve digital connectivity and fan engagement in the sporting ground.

The new technology project, announced today, will see a secure and high-density Wi-Fi network rolled out in and around the stadium, giving attendees better access to interactive content and connectivity during games. The stadium is also investing in a new IPTV system, which will distribute high-definition digital content in real-time to 800 screens throughout the MCG.

Other improvements include a new exterior LED lighting system consisting of 240 LED lamps, which will give teams and clubs the ability to personalise and theme the stadium for fans, as well as help provide improved external digital signage in Yarra Park. The MCG is also upgrading media and broadcasting facilities onsite.

The technology enhancements are the next phase in a $45 million investment into the MCG, which has already seen two new high-definition scoreboards as well as high-definition television production facilities.

The exterior lighting is due to go live by April, while the Wi-Fi and IPTV solutions are expected to be completed in time for the 2015 Boxing Day Test.

“This will take the fan experience to another level with significant improvements to the MCG’s connectivity,” Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) CEO, Stephen Gough, said in a statement, adding that the MCG will soon be one of the most connected stadiums in the country.

“This increased capacity will be great news for the 4 million people who visit the MCG each year.”

MCC has appointed IBM as its head technical contractor, responsible for designing, evaluating technology and implementation. Cockram Construction will oversee the rollout as head contractor, and Cisco is also a partner in the project.

The MCC said it assessed stadiums globally to find a technology approach that put the fan’s experience first, highlighting Dallas Stadium, Metlife Stadium, Yankee Stadium and Wembley as examples.

“We have witnessed new technologies in action elsewhere and we want to ensure the MCG remains one of the great stadiums in the world,” Gough said.

The desire to bring more digital capabilities into the physical game experience was the subject of a panel on digital’s growing role in sporting experiences, held at the SCG earlier this week by the Trans-Tasman Business Circle.

During that panel, Cricket Australia’s executive general manager of media, communications and marketing, Ben Amarfio, pointed to the importance of building an at-match experience that equals the TV experience using digital capabilities.

Fellow panellist, and Commonwealth Bank’s general manager of brand, sponsorship and marketing services, Stuart Tucker, argued the industry wasn’t doing enough to address the digital experience of the fan in the stadium. CommBank is a Cricket Australia sponsor.

“We talk about the digital experience at home but we can’t forget about the fans in the ground,” he said.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

Conversations over a cuppa with CMO: The Star's George Hughes

It's been an incredibly tough three months for the Star as it shut its doors and stood down staff in response to the COVID-19 lockdown. Yet innovation has shone through, and if the CMO, George Hughes, has anything to say about it, such lateral thinking will continue as we start to recover from the crisis.

More Videos

We would like to invite you to the Virtual Exhibition about IoT Trends in 2020, 7 - 9 July, organised by Must.We developed a new B2B matc...

hayfa

Want to master digital transformation? Stop thinking about your own problems

Read more

We have been trying to help our clients through this time. I think the important thing is clear communication! We also created some check...

Erin Payne

Is COVID-19 the right time for a positive marketing campaign?

Read more

Very good article Sagar. Congrats! It's exactly what we are doing at Dafiti and it's very important have you close to us into this journey.

Roosevelt Junior

Making Your Organisation Data-Driven [MYOD] - Data-driven marketing - CMO Australia

Read more

Corporates should be innovating to stay relevant and disrupt the market and collaborating with startups is easily the best way to go for ...

Diana

How your company can innovate its way through the COVID-19 crisis

Read more

Very welll written Sagar and gives an excellent overview for data strategy for an orgaanization!

Ritvik Dhupkar

Making Your Organisation Data-Driven [MYOD] - Data-driven marketing - CMO Australia

Read more

Blog Posts

Business quiet? Now is the time to review your owned assets

For businesses and advertiser categories currently experiencing a slowdown in consumer activity, now is the optimal time to get started on projects that have been of high importance, but low urgency.

Olia Krivtchoun

CX discipline leader, Spark Foundry

Bottoms up: Lockdown lessons for an inverted marketing world

The effects of the coronavirus slammed the brakes on retail sales in pubs, clubs and restaurants. Fever-Tree’s Australia GM Andy Gaunt explains what they have learnt from some tricky months of trading

Andy Gaunt

General manager, Fever-Tree Australia and New Zealand

Younger demos thought lost are now found: But what about the missing money?

There is much talk about what VOZ will bring to the media industry. New ways to slice and dice audiences and segments. A clearer understanding of screen consumption. Even new ways to plan and buy. The most interesting result could be finding something many thought we lost - younger viewers, specifically the valuable 18-39s.

Michael Stanford

Head of 10 Imagine and national creative director, Network 10

Sign in