A Quick Route to Added Revenue for Sports Marketers’ Playbooks

The sports industry represents the 11th largest industry in the United States with an estimated net worth of $750 billion, according to Forbes. There is no question that this industry has taken one of the hardest hits to revenue as a result of the pandemic. Forbes reports that the three major U.S. sports leagues may see sales fall by about $13 billion as teams continue to face monetary threats from empty stadiums, lack of tourism, sponsorship revenue as well as lower capacity operations.

The National Football League (NFL) alone is facing a deficit of $2.7 billion in revenue due to reduced fan attendance from COVID-19 regulations, and many big Super Bowl advertisers have opted out as sponsors for this year’s game. The National Basketball Association (NBA) has lost an estimated $694 million, and Major League Baseball (MLB) has missed out on $5.2 billion while reducing its regular season from 162 games per team to 60.

Changing the Game: Pandemic Rebound & Growth

In today’s sports world, traditional approaches to revenue have fallen short amidst the pandemic. Revenue recovery will depend on new strategies, including fan experience beyond the gate.

Luckily, digital video-solution alternatives for sports marketers can capitalize on revenue and growth in a new way. The NFL, together with Microsoft Surface, have already taken the lead and is launching an interactive digital activation for the month of February to reconnect with fans and monetize their content like never before.

Also, as fanbases continue to grow, especially online, the sports industry is presented with a unique opportunity to capitalize on new, virtual engagement strategies that will ultimately drive revenue growth while creating more personalized experiences.

Interactive Video: A League Of Its Own For Sports Marketers

Sports Marketers and brands alike are taking note of the new trend in digital marketing: interactive video. More than just shoppable, interactive video is great for brands and industries who also want to expand on communication efforts at a more granular and fluid level.

Essentially, each video is layered with patented, interactive technology that allows for each object within the video to be identified and “brought to life” with descriptions, images, gifs, internal or external links, purchase options and more. Interactive technology can increase video engagement upwards of 400%, setting a new bar in the digital world terms of consumer experience, understanding and insights, brand loyalty, industry innovation leadership, monetization avenues (sponsorships, shoppability, etc.) and much more.

Revenue Recovery Options within Interactive Video

  1. Virtual Video Sponsorships
    Interactivity provides ad and marketing slots on top of, or beside, videos that are contextually relevant and dynamic in the case of low ad or house inventory.  For example, if a fan is online watching an interactive video of a basketball game, companies can dynamically highlight a dunk where a sponsorship overlay can appear and transform as the video progresses.
  2. E-Commerce Monetization
    Interactive video can make any/all objects immediately shoppable – creating a revenue stream that did not previously exist. For example, online fans could see the option to click on and/or purchase a player’s jersey without being interrupted or having to leave the video experience. The data is driven by the video, with insights growing and driving personalization the longer the creative runs.

Fan Engagement Solutions within Interactive Video

  1. Convenience & Quality
    In a survey conducted by Salesforce, 76% of consumers expect companies to understand their needs. Furthermore, 56% of customers actively seek to buy from the most innovative companies (while expecting a great level of data protection and security). Interactive video is this decade’s solution for raising consumer expectations and trust.
  2. Enhanced Communication
    The advancement of interactive video has created a reality in which brands can more effectively communicate multiple messages to intended audiences in a way that sparks greater importance and builds awareness.

New Insights from Interactive Video

  1. Metadata & Analytics
    Many providers currently supply logo data from live games days after the games air. These metadata insights should be delivered in real-time so immediate optimizations and adjustments can be made to in-arena placements, etc.

Conclusion: Stepping Up To the Plate

The marriage of creativity with results-driven analytics and performance, is propelling data-driven video avenues forward. Major sports leagues will want more ownership of their content, as well as opportunities to monetize their content even more deeply (whether the content has a long shelf-life or not).

Sports marketers: the ball is in your hands. The time for digital innovation is now, so start by testing out interactive fan experiences.

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Devin Monds
Head of EMEA Sales

Devin is a dedicated and experienced media sales professional with over 15 years in the digital media space in both North America and EMEA. He most recently headed up the International Team at Adludio, the premier advertising platform for delivering strong creative on mobile devices. Prior to his role at Adludio, Devin worked on the Global Brand Partnerships team at CAA Sports in London, and was International Sales Director at LoopMe where he built out the US West Coast Sales Team from Los Angeles. With a proven track record of new business development and revenue generation, Devin has a multitude of solid relationships with brands and agencies, globally.

He relishes the opportunity to engage with new clients on a daily basis, in order to identify tailored solutions that can drive their desired outcomes. Furthermore, he takes pride in his culinary skills, often experimenting with new recipes and delivering delectable results.

    Brad Quinn
    VP of Publisher Development

    Brad Quinn is the VP of Publisher Partnerships based out of our NYC office. He has over 15 years of experience across Agencies, Publishers and Tech. At KERV, Brad leads the Partnerships team focused on content providers and distributors. He integrates KERV’s tech capabilities across ads and content to create a real‑time interactive/shoppable experience.

    David Knight
    VP of Engineering

    Before joining KERV in 2018, David Knight spent over 31 years building software products for large corporations like IBM and Schlumberger, 3-person “garage” startups and everything in between. He’s spent the last 15 years discovering and refining the tools, development process, and necessary culture that create great Engineering teams capable of meeting the special demands of technology driven startups.

    Dan Bloomfield
    VP of Technical Ad Operations

    After spending time living in New York and working for NBC Universal’s first digital operations team Daniel moved to Austin in 2009 to further pursue ad tech. During the next decade, he built a career working on interactive video first for Sizmek and then Nexstar. He immediately jumped at the idea to work for KERV and was one of the first to join the company in 2017.

    Creed Pettit
    SVP, Head of Partnerships

    Creed Pettit is an entrepreneurial sales executive offering experience in all aspects of solutions selling, team management, negotiation, organizational leadership, go-to-market strategies and momentum driven models. Prior to joining KERV, Creed served as Media & Entertainment Vertical Sales Leader, Global Business Solutions at TikTok.

    Karen Germ
    VP of Marketing

    Karen Germ is a seasoned marketing and communications professional with a nearly 15‑year history serving in leadership roles across the advertising and technology landscape. Most recently, Karen served as OAAA’s VP of Marketing where she implemented industry leading initiatives to elevate and promote the power of OOH for advertisers, agencies, partners and consumers. 

    Ryan Schoenfeld
    VP of Digital Strategy

    Ryan Schoenfeld’s career started as an intern at a smaller digital media agency while attending the University of Texas. Since then, he has spent over 15 years working in the programmatic advertising/video space.

    Bill Roberson
    VP of Media

    Bill Roberson has worked in the digital space for over 17 years, spanning Media Buying, Ad Operations, Analytics and Optimization, Account Management and now Creative.

    Grant Gorton
    VP of Creative

    Grant has been with KERV as VP of Creative for over 5 years, and has worked as a designer and creative director at agencies and media companies for the last 17 years.

    Michael Fleischman

    Michael Fleischman serves as the CFO at KERV Interactive in addition to being an Executive Residence at Progress Partners, a Merchant Investment Bank and Venture Fund. Prior to KERV Interactive, Michael was the CFO and current Board Member at Digital Remedy, a privately-held media execution company supporting agencies, publishers, and brands in navigating the complex adtech landscape of digital success.

    Previous to Digital Remedy, Michael spent 20 years at Cablevision and Rainbow Media Holdings during which he was instrumental in the launch and management of multiple regional sports networks and a number of national cable networks including American Movie Classics, Bravo, The Independent Film Channel as well as the structuring of partnerships with companies including Liberty Media, NBC, Fox/NewsCorp, and MGM. 

    A native of the New York City area, Michael resides with his wife where he enjoys biking, tennis  and spending time with his wife and three adult children.

    Taylor Pate

    Taylor Pate serves as CTO at KERV Interactive. Taylor’s experiences in the advertising and creative industry spans 14. He began his career in 2008, working as a designer, animator and art director specializing in the design and production of interactive art. Early in his career, he created 3D character animations and tools for best-selling video game series The Sims while working at Edge of Reality, who developed video games for Nintendo 64, GameCube, PlayStation and Xbox.

    In 2012, Taylor made the shift to work in-house at an online advertising and media services agency, LIN Digital, where he was promoted multiple times in a four-year span. He worked on a variety of online, interactive projects for clients while also developing and automating internal tools and processes. Taylor then spent the next two years working as the director of engineering at multi-platform digital media company HYFN Local, a division of multi-billion-dollar corporation Nexstar Digital LLC.

    Jay Wolff

    Jay Wolff serves as Chief Revenue Officer at KERV Interactive, leading global revenue and partnerships, in addition to being the Executive Vice President of 212 NYC, New York’s leading organization for the digital advertising industry. 

    Jay’s expertise in revenue and partner growth in the advertising industry spans 19 years. Most recently, Jay served as CRO of Varick Media, and Chief Growth Officer at Boostr, the first end-to-end SaaS revenue management system for media companies. Previously, as Regional Vice President of SambaTV, Wolff built the revenue organization and east coast market from the ground up. 

    Prior to joining SambaTV, Wolff served as Vice President of agency and brand partnerships at PulsePoint; instrumental to the merger of ContextWeb and Datran Media.

    Jay holds a BS in Marketing from Syracuse University and a Certificate of Management from the University of Chicago. He resides in Rye Brook, NY with his wife and daughter, Olivia. 

    Dan Bienenfeld

    Before co‑founding KERV in 2017, Dan Bienfeld spent the previous 35 years founding six start‑ups in various verticals such as publishing, licensing, med‑tech and ad‑tech. Within these companies, he enjoyed two meaningful exits, which provided him with the ability to continue his passion as an entrepreneur. 

    Aside from bringing together ‘Rock Star Talent,’ his main focus has been raising over $50M, primarily for the startups identified above, as well as creating strategic partnerships. Currently he lives in Westlake Village, CA with his wife and two kids. In addition to his entrepreneurial journey, he also enjoys working out, traveling and an addiction to sushi.

    Gary Mittman

    Gary Mittman brings more than 30 years of experience in technology and direct marketing, as well as substantial experience in building startups to exit with creativity and agile development. Before starting KERV, he held numerous top‑ranking leadership roles, including Founder & President of Nami Media (which was acquired by Lin Media/Nexstar Media Group), CEO & Founder of Marina Communications (also acquired), and Vice President of New Business Development, Direct Response at Western International Media (now Initiative Media).

    Gary also brings a decade of experience in the entertainment industry, including managing all booking for New York City’s premiere performance night club, The Ritz, as its Executive Manager and Booking Agent, Executive Producer of the MTV concert series ‘Live At The Ritz’, a Professional Manager at Chappell Music Publishing, and started out as an Assistant to legendary Clive Davis at Arista Records.

    Andi Fenster

    Andi Fenster went into the profession of Human Resources 30 years ago, because she believed from a young age that the way you treat your employees is what you get out of them. Her goal as an HR professional has been to help create the type of work environments that inspire folks to want to come to work. She is also a Management/Leadership/Career Coach and her focus is optimizing humans focusing on the mind‑body connection. 

    “We, each, have tremendous potential and the abilities to level‑up if we choose to understand how to get the support we need to get us there. Helping talent thrive and helping them create success is my reason for doing what I do.”

    Marika Roque
    COO & Chief Innovation Officer

    Marika Roque is a top expert in digital media, data and organizational infrastructures recognized with over 15 years of professional leadership experience. Previous to KERV, Marika worked as the vice president of digital operations for Mass2, a division of multi-billion-dollar corporation Nexstar Digital LLC. Prior to Mass2, Marika served as vice president of digital media activation at LIN Digital.

    Marika has held senior-level positions for leading advertising agencies in the Austin, Texas area including Sizmek and GSD&M. She also spent years in Chicago working for FCB Global and Starcom MediaVest Group. While at Starcom, Marika was recognized for her involvement in the creation of the first agency-side programmatic pipelines and what the industry now refers to as an agency trading desk.

    Marika holds a Bachelor’s in Advertising from The University of Texas at Austin, which she achieved while also participating as a former D1 collegiate athlete.