How are US sports franchises delivering premium suite experiences to clients stuck at home?

The DAIMANI Journal is a huge fan of the webinars conducted by the Association of Luxury Suite Directors, a trade body that includes many of the best known official hospitality rightsholders for venues and stadia across North America.

In this week’s video session, the ALSD’s president Amanda Verhoff  is in discussion with Becky Coffey, the vice president of partner activation and premium experience for the NHL Columbus Blue Jackets; Candy Fuzesy, the director of premium seating services and operations for the NFL Minnesota Vikings; and Kristin Miller, the director of suite services, baseball’s Milwaukee Brewers.

Each of the three sports franchises have developed ‘stay-at-home’ VIP Hospitality programmes that reach out into the actual ‘lockdown’ lives of those company employees and individual purchasers responsible for those lucrative season-long or multi-year suite deals.

The Milwaukee Brewers’ initiative is called ‘From the Homefront’, the Minnesota Vikings’ is ‘Norseman Gold’ and the Columbus Blue Jackets have the ‘Hockey from Home’ initiative.

The panel reveal that because everything is customised for their most valued guests, and that requires a personal touch, the premium service professionals and sales teams supporting them are actually strengthening relationships with clients ‘who were less apt to share personal details prior to the current pandemic’, according to the ALSD.

‘Turning the Page on Premium Guest Service’ explores the virtual tailgates and other experiences replacing the in-stadia Live Event version, how to communicate in a way that cuts through the mass of corporate COVID-19 messages, how the three franchises are creating content that is exclusive to their suite partners, the complimentary gift boxes sent to vulnerable accounts, and the opportunities to lead and serve staff as well.

Solutions for a Shutdown: Turning the Page on Premium Guest Service

Introductions/Housekeeping Notes: 0:15

From the Homefront Series: 8:09

Personal Communications: 11:46

Norseman Gold Virtual Events: 14:18

Simple, Vulnerable Messages: 17:18

Hockey from Home Initiative: 18:52

Virtual Tailgating: 22:26

Complimentary WFH, Wellness Gift Boxes: 25:27

Supporting Corporate Partners: 27:37

Taking a Mental Health Break: 32:30

Move the Needle, Don’t Check a Box: 36:58

Leading and Managing Staff Amidst Social Distancing: 38:51

Fans Asking for Refunds or Credits: 43:11

Door-to-Door Premium Experiences: 44:19

Future Considerations for Premium Service Providers: 45:33

Dogs and TikTok: 52:13

Season 2016-2017 saw the opening of the Minnesota Vikings’ new stadium and this was the fan reaction to the launch of the Delta Sky360 Club which was at the time the very first US venue to feature a player walk-through

Zack Hample is famous across baseball as one of the sport’s most famous [or infamous] collectors of baseballs.

Here Hample is vlogging in August 2018 about his experience at Miller Stadium, the home of the Milwaukee Brewers, and from 3.08 he takes us on a tour inside an executive suite.

Author image
Charlie Charters is a former rugby union official and sports marketing executive turned thriller writer whose debut book Bolt Action was published by Hodder & Stoughton in 2010.
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