At Built.io we get a lot of questions about what exactly a connected fan experience means.
Different Experiences, Based on Your Audience
Connected experiences will always vary based on your audience needs. That’s why it’s important to leverage technology that supports APIs and microservices through integration. This way you can use one tried and tested platform to incorporate any technology you want, rather than having to suffer through a cookie cutter solution.
That said, over the years we’ve found there are a few key elements that you should consider in helping to define what it means to build a connected venue.
A Framework For A Connected Experience
Consider the below to be an MPV, or Minimally Viable Product.
In a connected venue, every aspect of the environment should “just work”. Examples of this might include cool technology like ticketless, frictionless entry, indoor maps, sensors and beacons to help guide people to their parking spots, seats, bathrooms, or vendors, deals and coupons sent in real-time, and more.
Under the hood, the technology you need to support connecting all of your systems, microservices, and data is an iPaaS (integration Platform-as-a-Service) like Built.io Flow.
In Venue, Mobile and at Home
A connected fan experience doesn’t start and stop at venue. Your app should be useful both in the venue, on the go, and especially at home.
To a degree, this dovetails off the concept of seamlessness. You want to connect the physical and digital worlds of home and in-venue so that a fan can access stats, news, betting, deals, tickets, and more – at any given time. Think of your app as an “always-on” concierge or the remote control to their experience.
Intelligent and Predictive Experience
An app should anticipate what you want and where you’re going. A connected experience in this context might mean a bot or a push notification letting you know that you’ll need to order a drink in the last quarter because the bar will close, and ask you if you want to go ahead and purchase – right in your app.
By leveraging machine learning, an intelligent app could build personas and present different information based on what kind of attendee you are. If you’re a huge sports fan and you open your app several times a day, you should be shown game stats first. But if you’re more of a concert and venue attendee, you might prefer to see the performance schedule first instead. If you’re a vegetarian, you’d want to see an indoor map sharing the best vegetarian food options. By providing tailored experiences, you’re really creating an unforgettable fan experience.
Tips For How to Build Your Own Connected Fan Experience
It’s important to remember that In order for all your services to “just work,” you’ll need to make sure your organization takes an API-first and microservices approach to architecture. You can think of this as the building blocks to connectivity, since APIs are what powers all things digital.
Additionally, you need to connect all your services through an iPaaS (integration Platform-as-a-Service), among a number of other steps like vetting your vendors properly, overestimating your budget, and hiring people who are smarter than you.