With many small business owners facing the annual challenge of boosting sales in the first few months of the year, could major sporting events be the answer?
Between 2017 and 2025, the economic impact of sporting events hosted on home turf is expected to generate up to £440 million for UK businesses.
Whether you’re a pub owner in a small village or an events business looking for some fresh ideas, capitalising on televised sporting events can pull hundreds of customers through your doors.
With a recent survey showing the UK pub sector is expanding for the first time in ten years, there’s no time like the present for small businesses to stay ahead of the competition and capitalise on sales opportunities from upcoming events.
Join us as we explore the importance of sporting events for small businesses and offer top tips to boost sales in 2020.
How to Boost Sales for Small Businesses
The post-Christmas lull and Dry January means most pubs and restaurants experience a dramatic hit on alcohol sales over the first two months of the year. Reduced footfall makes it difficult to maintain steady cash flow and start the year on the right foot.
While low-cost promotional strategies like flyering and social media can increase customer engagement, many small businesses fail to maximise on a golden opportunity to boost sales.
Yes, you guessed it — sports.
The British public can’t get enough of it. Shockingly, Brits spend a billion more hours watching sports than actually playing them. Televising major sporting events can give your small business the competitive edge it needs to get those cash registers chiming.
Are you Game Ready?
While selling tickets for live sporting events is big business, the indirect impact of these events also benefits smaller businesses across the country.
Whether it’s screening regular Premier League matches or creating one-off events to celebrate the Six Nations Championship, big-screen sport can send sales through the roof.
For example, total consumer spending during the 2018 football World Cup came to a staggering £2.45 billion. Similarly, over half a million visitors flocked to the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in 2019 as local bars, restaurants and pubs enjoyed a surge in customers throughout the 13-day tournament.
Look Beyond Football
Unsurprisingly, football is the most popular sport in UK pubs. The average pub enjoys sales over £30k from broadcasting live Premier League games.
However, a recent report on the value of sport explains how UK businesses should look beyond football to maximise on other events popular amongst sports fans. For example, the 2019 Super Bowl saw revenue increase by an average of £1,130 per pub, and the Rugby World Cup saw sales rocket by 47%. Similarly, the average boxing fan spends 15% more per visit to the pub than football fans.
As the co-founder of MatchPint, Dom Collingwood explains, “sport continues to be a profit driver for pubs; however, one message remains clear – football is not enough.”
Major Sporting Events for 2020
February sees some of the biggest sporting events in the world. Creating a calendar of unmissable events can be an effective way to create a buzz around your business and build a name for yourself as a sporting mecca.Here are just some of the big screen events to get excited about:
- FA Cup. The much-anticipated fourth round of the UK’s favourite football tournament kicks off on 25th January. The clash between West Ham United and West Bromwich Albion is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.
- The Six Nations. It’s that time of the year again. On 1st February, Wales face Italy with the first game of the most talked-about rugby tournament of the year. Be sure to fill the cellars with plenty of Guinness for an almighty battle between England and Ireland on 23rd February.
- Super Bowl. Make sure you have beers on ice and hot wings at the ready for the ultimate NFL showdown on 2nd February. Each year, over 1.3 million Brits tuned in for an all-American evening of the world’s biggest sporting event.
- Premier League. As the competition reaches melting, February gives football fans an unmissable month of some of the most exciting games of the season. Stay tuned for 22nd February as Man City and Leicester City fight for second place.
- UEFA Championships League. The world’s biggest football tournament will be hitting our screens on 18th February. As top-division European clubs set their sights on the top prize, football fans will be out in all their glory to catch the action.
Don't Miss UEFA Euro 2020
June is set to be an action-packed month for pubs and bars as twenty international teams take part in the ultimate football showdown across twelve European cities.
Millions of fans fill the streets every four years to cheer on their national team. This summer, UK business owners have a chance to capitalise on the excitement with a handful of big games in both London and Glasgow. Here are some of the hottest matches for your diaries:
- 14th June – England vs Croatia
- 19th June – England vs play-off winner from Group C
- 23th June – England vs Czech Republic
- 27th June – 1A vs 2C
- 7th July – Semi finals 1
- 8 July – Semi finals 2
- 12 July – Finals
Glasgow (Hampden Park)
- 15 June – Czech Republic vs Play-off winner from Group C
- 19 June – Croatia vs Czech Republic
- 23 June – Croatia vs play-off winner from Group C
How to Prepare for the Major Sporting Events
“Essentially the message is: If you have got it all, flaunt it all. Yes, put the football on. But also put the rugby on, grow your NFL audience, order the big fights on Box Office and make sure you talk about it. That is how you make the most of sports” - MatchPint co-founder Dom Collingwood.
Selling tickets in advance of a sporting event helps build hype around the big day and secures some up-front capital to cover the costs of marketing and running the event.
The key to selling tickets for a one-off event is marketing. For example, if you’ve ordered the big fight on Box Office or forked out for an expensive license to show the Six Nations, you need to make sure enough people attend to cover the costs.
With the UEFA Euro 2020 also set to cause a huge spike in consumer spending, now is the time to get your pub or bar ready - whether you're looking to give your pub a fresh lick of paint or completely renovate your bar, the cost can easily feel like a bottomless pit, especially if you’re strapped for cash at the start of the year.
However, if your business accepts credit or debit payments from customers, you could get your hands on fast and affordable cash to give your business the boost it needs by raising between £5,000 and £200,000 in unsecured finance with a business cash advance.
Grow Your Business with 365 Business Finance
Get your hands on the cash you need to screen the biggest games in 2020. 365 Business Finance offers fast and affordable funding to help your small business scale to new heights.
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