Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Franchise 101 - Part 01 - Markets

Part 1 of a series of posts regarding NHL (sports really) teams. The series will, hopefully, serve as a template by which a casual fan can better determine the present and future state of the team they love.

The market that a team operates in is a function of origin, size, support and wealth. Really. That is it. Teams can mitigate market impairments (hedging currency, revenue sharing) or exploit market strengths (special jerseys, get those movie stars!) all they want but the basics are as listed:


A matter of being Canadian or American. A very specific circumstance and not one that is an issue right now but we all remember when the Canadian dollar was less than 80 cents right?


A matter of geography and population. How many people does the team have access to? Not always just the city the team plays in. More people is generally better.


A matter of market size and penetration. Just how popular is the team? Smaller markets have to have more per capita support, wealthier support or some functional mix.


A matter of how much money the fans have to spend. Lots of fans with a little cash each, few fans with loads of cash or, as is generally the case, some kind of mix. All cash welcome.


Why post something so obvious? Because the market that a team operates in is one of the basic building blocks of team competitiveness. A team that operates in a small, poor, uninterested market that suffers from currency issues will require special circumstances indeed if it is to be competitive long, or even short, term.

The greatest of special circumstances is, of course, ownership.

But before you turn your mind to ownership please think about your team in the context of the four points I just mentioned. Be sure that the marketing department of your team will have this all covered (they know their fan demographics down to the shirt sizes I am sure) but I am not posting this for their benefit.

Think about your team.

Franchise 101 - Introduction and Chapter Listing


Have a great evening everyone.

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