Around the country, in communities big and small, local sports is driving traffic to websites. High School sports fans check in for the latest scores, and parents of student athletes are eager to see write ups of weekly games. For broadcasters, there’s a huge opportunity to monetize this largely untapped resource.
Growing revenue from local sports coverage means effective planning and looking outside the box. News and sports are very different in the eyes of the reader, and there’s no reason to think they are necessarily on the same spectrum of content.
By unbundling sports from the rest of their websites, local publishers have the opportunity to grow their revenue in exciting new ways.
Break Out of the News Cycle
In communities with multiple news outlets, there can be a lot of competition around news and sports coverage. That’s why a website dedicated to only local sports will be the go-to place for game updates and recaps.
A number of local publishers (like the ones below using the OneCMS Sports package) are successfully grabbing an audience with user-submitted video and images, school specific sections and pages dedicated to each sport along with game recaps.
Local sports websites have the ability be the first to publish final scores in a way that local television stations and print newspapers cannot, providing them with a huge competitive advantage.
How Do I Run A Local Sports Site?
Reach out to Advertisers who are Boosters
It really isn’t tough to tell which local businesses support area sports. Check out the list of sponsors inside programs and on the backs of athletes’ jerseys.
Reporters who are already working local games can jot down the names of businesses they see advertising and then pass those names along to the sales department. Those local business boosters are going to be some of the best bets for publishers looking to sell display advertising alongside articles in their sports sections.
Sports sites give a lot of different avenues for sponsorship. You can charge a premium when you give advertisers exclusive rights to a school’s section, or to articles about specific sports within that section. The general popularity of local sports makes this an attractive option for advertisers, as does the ability for them to target a specific demographic or subset of news readers.
The most common way for publishers to go about bundling sponsorships of sports coverage is to sell display advertising packages that include complete coverage of a sport or a team for the duration of a season. For example, every article about the high school football team would be flanked by a sidebar ad or a banner ad from one specific advertiser, such as a local dealership or a restaurant.
Find Fans Willing to Contribute for Free
Experienced sports journalists can craft the types of compelling articles that win awards, but paid writers aren’t always necessary for short briefs and game recaps. Look in the stands during any sports event and you’ll find plenty of people willing to write short stories for free, or send in real-time score updates via text or Twitter. Parents of student athletes can be particularly helpful here, since they rarely miss a game and many are very reliable.
Publishers who are interested in going this route should make sure to provide some type of training to parent contributors, including some best practices for reporting scores and taking videos and photographs.
OneCMS Sports Brings it All Together
Easy to Manage Schools, Sports and Games
OneCMS Sports isn’t some hacked together group of 3rd party plugins that kinda work together.
Nope, OneCMS Sports is a proprietary system that was designed in-house specifically for local sports websites to easily manage Schools, Teams and individual games. It also comes with a companion app that not only keeps your fanbase up to date on scores and game schedules, but it also allows them to submit videos and images to specific games, teams or schools!
Your Name in Lights
Built-in to the OneCMS sports package is the ability to AUTOMATICALLY highlight athletes that are being talked about using the proprietary People Scanner.
The People Scanner searches your content for real names and automatically creates “people tags” that are associated with the article. This allows your readers to see which stories their favorite athlete has been included in easily. Imagine seeing your child’s name highlighted!
Check out what Ozone Sports Zone has done with this feature. They’ve created the O-Zone Hot 100. An automated listing of all the athletes that have been mentioned recently in their content.
There’s a ton more specific features to OneCMS Sports; like automated galleries for every game, deep Google Ad Manager integration, video options, live scoreboards, and much, much more! Check it out today!