Enthrall Sports, a Seattle-based software company focused on transforming the fan experience at live sporting events, has partnered with the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League to enhance the gameday presentations at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
Working closely with the Lightning’s game operations, marketing and social media teams, Enthrall has implemented a mobile app feature that enables fans to choose the night’s music, create videos to share throughout the venue, and become an active participant in gameday. Enthrall’s cutting-edge technology also includes facial recognition so the team can analyze and measure the engagement level and emotional response of the audience.
“Think of this as crowd-sourcing content in a live, real-time setting,” said Alan McGinnis, CEO of Enthrall Sports. “With our technology, the Lightning can offer an innovative, cutting-edge gameday experience that truly engages and entertains its fans. We are thrilled to be working with them.”
“We know we have one of the most passionate fan bases in the NHL,” said Lightning CEO Steve Griggs. “This technology enables us to tap into that passion and creativity on a nightly basis while enabling our fans to share their love for the team in a smart, fun and engaging way.”
In addition to launching its technology with the Lightning, Enthrall is exploring additional partnerships with other teams, leagues, venue management companies and app providers, McGinnis said.
How it works
Enthrall has created a mobile application called FanCap (short for Fan Capture) that lives inside the team’s mobile app. Using FanCap, fans create short, six-second videos and submit them directly to the Lightning’s game-ops control room.
The team can solicit specific FanCaps, such as “Show us your victory dance when the Bolts score.” The FanCaps are assembled by game-ops producer, then shown to the crowd over the in-venue displays.
Another feature is LiveCap, which enables fans to capture a live video feed during the game which is streamed in real time onto the in-arena displays.
The Lightning also can use the technology to conduct live, real-time voting and polls with fans during a game.
“This content, generated by the fans, is current, fresh and always unique to that single game’s experience,” McGinnis said. “Fans are creating lots of video content already, we are providing a conduit between the Lightning and their fans to share that content beyond their own social media circles, and do it in an organized and fun way.”
The Lightning also can use Enthrall’s technology to measure fan reactions and emotional responses through facial recognition and in-arena video cameras. As a result, the Lightning will be able to obtain quick-time fan feedback and fan reaction, enabling the team to modify and experiment with what works and what doesn’t.
Why it matters
For any sports team, gameday operations are critically important in providing fans with a fun, entertaining and memorable game experience.
As teams across all leagues have improved gameday operations with larger screens, bigger speakers and enhanced production elements, Enthrall enriches those advancements by providing a heightened opportunity for fans to engage in a more personal way - driving a deeper loyalty and an intimate gameday experience.
“When content is pushed to the audience, it excludes fans from participating in the experience,” McGinnis said. “Gameday content is improving, but is behind the curve in this time of social media, user-generated content and audience engagement. Fans are eager to engage and participate, and they expect to be able to do so.”
“There is no better articulation of our brand than from our fans,” Griggs said. “The content that we are getting from them via Enthrall’s technology is genuine and authentic and honestly reflects our brand attributes. As a result, we are working together to create a gameday experience that truly is by, of and for the fans.”
About Enthrall Sports
Enthrall Sports is a software company that develops technology and tools that transforms the fan experience at live sports events.
Enthrall’s holistic approach to game day presentations creates a conduit between fans and teams and organizing the potential chaos of user-generated content, thereby enabling true fan engagement. By doing so, Enthrall adds tremendous value for sports teams and owners by creating authentic, live-game experiences that are by, of and for the people.
Enthrall launched its technology in 2015 with the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena in Tampa. As the 2015-2016 season progresses, they continue to gather feedback, develop the product and strive to improve its features for the best possible enhancement of gameday for the teams and their fans. Enthrall also is exploring additional partnerships with all major sports leagues, venue management companies and app providers. FanCap is available now via the all-new Tampa Bay Lightning app for i0S. An Android version is coming soon.
For information, please see www.enthrallsports.com.