E-Newsletter   |  JULY 2019
Research Industry veteran Ed Sugar, has joined the Sports & Leisure Research Group team as Senior Strategist. For the past twenty-five years, Ed has played a strong role in the growth and achievement of several research companies, including OLC Global, ISA, Irwin Research Services and Horizon Research/Triton Technology.  A highly recognized industry leader, Sugar was awarded honorary lifetime membership in the Insights Association/MRA in 2016, serving previously as a national board member and chair of the organization's programming committee and has also received that association's Award of Excellence and Distinguished Service Award. Ed's research industry leadership also has included stints on the board of directors and national committees for the American Marketing Association, Marketing Research Institute International (MRII) and the Travel and Tourism Research Association (TTRA).  SLRG President Jon Last in making the announcement, said, "I have always admired Ed's creativity, strategic vision and drive for excellence. Welcoming him to our team is a culmination of many years of collaboration and achievement." You can reach out to Ed at Eds@sportsandleisureresearch.com

Sports and Leisure Research Group President Jon Last will again moderate and present recent industry insights in the opening keynote presentation at the 2019 Golf Inc. Strategies Summit, September 23 at the Ritz Carlton, Reynolds Plantation Georgia.  The 1:30pm session titled, Demographic Changes: What's Happening in the World and What it means for Golf also features, Jim Hinckley, CEO of Century Golf Partners and American Golf, Sal Syed, CEO/Co-Founder of Arccos Golf and Jason Becker, CEO of Golf Life Navigators.  In this keynote, attendees will look at the latest research and its implications for segmenting the marketplace and how leading organizations are seeing to expand their share of customer as the demographics, needs and service expectations of golfers evolves.  For more information or to register for the conference (Sept 23-25), CLICK HERE

BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND:  FREE Insights Audit Identifies Customer Knowledge Gaps

Need some fresh Summer perspective? SLRG is again offering a no obligation complimentary insights audit to readers of this newsletter who want to optimize understanding of their customers or competitive market.  
An SLRG insights audit is a systematic approach that helps sports, travel and leisure marketers to first gain an initial grasp of those formal and informal sources of insights presently available, that can fuel business process improvements, more resonant communications messaging, assess the efficacy of current marketing, product development or innovation and/or identify new ways to surprise and delight current and future customers.  After completing the initial audit phase, SLRG partners then guide clients through a series of strategic questions that seek to uncover knowledge gaps and surface the most efficient and expedient ways to fill them. 
If we haven't worked together over the past nine months, we
're again offering this service at no cost and no obligation to the first five qualified organizations that click HERE and request an audit.

Golf Industry insiders can gain more research driven perspectives, as SLRG President Jon Last debuts as a regular editorial contributor to SwingU's weekly Strategies newsletter.  Last's column will look at consumer trends and other topical industry issues, beginning this month.

SwingU, founded in 2010, is a golf technology and media company that owns and operates a variety of digital assets in the golf space, including a daily golf e-newsletter and mobile apps that reach an estimated 1 million active monthly users.  News & Views readers can learn more about SwingU, HERE.  

Jon's contributions will also be posted on the Sports and Leisure Research Group website 
Goodbye to Sports Void Day...Breaking through the Clutter of Fan Options:

   It's incredible to look back at how the myriad options for fans to consume sports has evolved and expanded over the past two decades.  I used to call the July days surrounding MLB's All-Star game "Sports Void Days" because there was literally nothing to watch or follow.  That is far from the case today, and it's reflective of a challenge that several SLRG clients have tasked us to look at in recent months. Whether it be within a local metro market or on a national stage, it's incumbent that sports properties find ownable and meaningful points of differentiation to create compelling stories that will captivate and engage fans. Fortunately, creatively designed marketing research can help uncover these insights as well as test the resonance of potential message points and creative strategies.  In recent projects we've deployed a mix of qualitative immersions, forced exposure exercises, and quantitative contextual pre and post perception testing, among other modalities to determine the "secret sauce" that drives more fan engagement and greater ticket sales.  The answers have been vastly different across properties. We can do the same for you!    CONTACT US

Entertainment Marketing: Give the People What they Want 
Leisure properties and destinations recognize that they, too compete in a cluttered marketplace, where the quality of amenities and ancillary activities can often make the difference between incremental bookings or losing a prospective guest to a competitor.  To address this reality, the criticality of defining the right entertainment options recently emerged as an important question for an SLRG leisure client.  More than simply identifying the most popular and compelling performers, our multi-modal research approach utilized both qualitative and quantitative phases to fully explore other ambient aspects of the experience. Resulting analysis identified not only optimal solutions, but surfaced opportunities and price elasticities across a variety of guest segments.  Paraphrasing the band, The Kinks, research helped to give the people what they want. Let us know how we can help your property do the same.  CONTACT US

In his June Media Post item, SLRG's Jon Last speaks to those unique elements of sports marketing that are a starting point from which practitioners can break through the marketing clutter. READ MORE
In the lead item on Media Post's Marketing Insider, SLRG's Jon Last sees DAZN's new studio show as a great litmus test for both MLB's uber focus on youth and the ways in which sports content will be consumed beyond the in-person experience.  Recent research may foreshadow the impact.
April 2019's Marketing Insider speaks to how fan insights have and will continue to reshape event venues in the future.  A major question facing properties surrounds where to draw the line between innovation and erosion of the traditional experience.
In his latest blog for Marketing Research Institute International (MRII), SLRG President and MRII immediate past board president Jon Last suggests that it is time to reassess some disturbing trends in customer satisfaction assessment. Quick and simple "research" can often equal misinformation. We've likely all been there.  Whether it's after a customer service phone call, [...]
The April 29, 2019 issue of Travel Weekly speaks to how resorts have evolved their golf offerings to appeal to a broader audience, with SLRG's Jon Last offering contextual perspective. 
The cover story in April 2019's Golf Range Magazine features key findings and implications of the current trend towards a focus on practice range renovations, uncovered in SLRG's latest Market TrendWatch study conducted with the ASGCA. READ HERE
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