Are You Paid To Care?
One of the largest mistakes that any sports executive can make is assuming that they understand the product better than the customer. Sometimes, that’s a deception created by the fact that the executive is “paid to care.”
Being paid to care isn’t a crime, but it can dilute exactly in what ways the product or promotion is truly wanted or desired by the fan base. Executives may think that they know, specifically, and be totally wrong in what promotions work and why.
What does that mean?
When you are paid to do something, there is a vested interested in doing it. Therefore, you don’t see how to sell the product as effectively sometimes because you think that the product is perfect. Especially if you were the leader who created it in the first place. Even if there is no use or demand by the customer base for it. This involves the franchise executive asking themselves what exactly the customer wants.
Would it be a product that the executive themselves would also pay for, if they weren’t selling it?
This means forcing the executive to separate themselves from being “paid to care” and becoming a customer. Focusing on the wants, needs and desires of the customer and seeing if the product or promotion is even a factor. A lot of customers may not see the product as being worth their time, and it is inherent for the sports executive, especially the sports marketer, to understand that in order to generate revenue, they must create and offer products that find the demand structure of their customer base.
Sometimes, the sports marketer seeks to shove their square peg into a round hole, simply because they fall in love with an idea over what the customer is asking for. They want to fit what they believe are good ideas for a marketing or theme night beyond the spectrum of what the customer is willing to buy or even desires to attend.
The issue remains that as much as the sports marketer or executive may think that a silly balloon animal theme night is the greatest idea ever, unless the customer thinks so, it truly is a bad reflection on the product offerings. This isn’t to say that the executive shouldn’t take chances, but they should also be ready to admit failure, rather than retreating that poorly received product back out to market several more times because admitting defeat harms their ego.