Why Melbourne Victory Football Club is rolling out marketing automation

A-league football club shares its customer data management efforts to date and how a new automation platform will help improve fan engagement

Melbourne Victory Football Club (MVFC) is looking to bolster member numbers and improve the way it engages with fans of the game after rolling out a marketing automation platform.

The A-League professional football club’s head of consumer business, Monica Dinh, told CMO the rapid rise in digital engagement witnessed over recent years was a key factor in its decision to strategically invest in technology platforms to better understand and communicate with fans. As well as building out a customised CRM platform, the association maintains its own ecommerce capabilities and online membership portal.

While MVFC had also been using email marketing tools, its former choice of software wasn’t integrated with CRM, making marketing automation the logical next step forward, she said. MVFC has chosen to invest in Marketo’s platform and expects to go live in the next couple of weeks.

“We had worked on a supporter continuum, knowing what the engagement points are and we’re really close to the consumer journey. It’s now about automating it,” she said.

Using the platform will give the MVFC marketing, digital and membership teams the ability to track fan behaviour across multiple channels, then develop email content that is relevant and timely based on their engagement with the club.

Over the last seven years, MVFC has built loyalty programs and community forums online and built up its customer data sets, using its CRM system as the centralised hub of intelligence.

“Having ownership over the CRM gave us flexibility with integration, and we’ve integrated that with many systems to enable the flow of data in our business to be seamless,” Dinh explained. “What comes with that is data integrity, so once we were confident of that, we were able to map out our consumer journey, from engaging with the club via an email address right through to ticket purchases to membership conversion. At every point we know which percentage conversion we have at each point in the customer journey.”

Integration of the marketing automation platform is now underway, and three of MVFC’s staff have undergone Marketo training, including its head of marketing and head analyst. Other users will include membership and community departments. The procurement process was managed by Dinh and the marketing team.

The automation platform is expected to benefit both MVFC’s efforts around member retention as well as its acquisition efforts. For instance, Dinh said it plans to automate a series of renewal reminder campaigns based on specific triggers such as whether a member searched information online. To date, the bulk of this has been done via direct mail and outbound calls.

Acquisition is arguably the bigger focus, and Dinh said the team planned to tap a wealth of data on visitors as it strives to convert game attendees into supporters initially, followed by different tiers of membership. Data insights range from number of games attended to merchandise purchased.

“We’ll then put them on the pathway to a membership type – we’ll decide what type they will best convert to and we’ll provide incentives based on those past transactions,” she said. “It’s marrying what their interests are with incentives to encourage them to sign up.”

Key metrics for gauging success will be additional transactions, such as whether a fan purchases an additional ticket for a game, cross-selling, merchandise sales or participating in its clinics.

The objective for MVFC this year is to lift its membership base from 27,000 to 30,000 this season, an ambitious task given its home ground, AAMI Park, can only take 25,000 memberships.

“We’ve had to come up with more creative ways with our memberships to enable us to reach those numbers,” Dinh said.

Key to getting the Marketo technology investment over the line was justifying the additional value of the platform compared to the former email marketing tool. To do this, Dinh said she emphasised the additional functionality provided around more relevant timing for when the customer is actually engaged with MVFC, as well as that additional information around their site visits and behaviour.

“It was about showing the benefits it would provide in that sales process,” she said.

While the initial rollout sees the platform being used just for email-based marketing communications, Dinh said there was every intention of expanding its utilisation of the software for other paid channel activity as well as integration with its digital properties.

“We have to start with the foundations of the system, and we’ll build from there,” she added.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+: google.com/+CmoAu

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

Blog Posts

Designing for a cashless society

More movement has been made toward a cashless society recently, and already we are starting to see enormous implications across our society.

Katja Forbes

Founder and chief, sfyte

Setting advertising objectives for financial performance

I’ll often be talking to clients and at some point say, ‘the most important thing is justifying price’. Then moments later, ‘the most important thing is increasing the size of your customer base’.

Kyle Ross

Strategist, TRP

5 common mistakes to avoid in scalable customer experience

CX is about future-proofing your business by ensuring that your commercial model is always looped into your customers' needs, perceptions, values, beliefs, motivators, and detractors.

Tom Uhlhorn

Founder and strategy director, Tiny CX

This is pure vomit material. Self congratulatory blurbs. No evidence of any innovation or actual value created. Most marketers have compl...

Bobbo

Announcing the CMO50 for 2018

Read more

Unfortunately, the title "AdTech Magic Quadrant" is misleading as it only represent a fraction of the ecosystem. It it is a useful docume...

Ludovic Leforestier

Report: Gartner recognises the best adtech players in Magic Quadrant

Read more

Thanks for writing about chatbots. Definitely bots have the exciting future when it comes to customer engagement, transactional and conve...

Giridhar Prathap Reddy

Australian Open chalks up strong ticket sales with chatbot

Read more

Hello, where are the explanations of all the levels explained? I'd like to review this with a couple of colleagues. Thanks.

Melinda Gonzalez

CMO launches CMO CX, debuts customer experience maturity assessment

Read more

A great and accurate commentary - today we rarely get true personalisation. On web journeys cookies or logins remember who we are, what w...

Ian Moyse

Salesforce: Personalisation is a long way off what consumers now expect

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in