At GreenPark, we're building the future of fandom. But what does that mean?
Our goal is to create a new sports fan experience for all types of fans. Today, when companies talk about making something for sports fans, all too often it's focused only on the sports superfan, the person who builds their life around their sports fandom. We get it - we want GreenPark to be something that serious, dedicated fans like many GreenParkers will love; something that really understands what it means to be a fan and lets you express yourself and compete with other fans.
But there are a LOT of sports fans out there. Fans like many other GreenParkers, who love their teams and players and have lifelong memories around loving sports - but who have other demands on their time, who love sports but don't make it the centerpiece of their lives. Who get - and need - something different out of sports.
So when we got together and thought about how exactly we wanted to build the future of fandom, we knew going into it that there are different kinds of fans that have different needs. Different fans get different things out of sports, but we want to make something for all of them. To do that, we needed to really get at the heart of what it means to be a fan, and what it means to build fandom.
We've spent time talking to fans, doing research into what fans do and want, and analyzing the behaviors that drive fandom. It's been fascinating and we think some of the insights we've uncovered are really important in understanding what different kinds of fans might get out of GreenPark.
At a high level, we've found that there's at least four stages of fandom as fans' relationships with a sport and team evolve:
Everybody starts out as a non-fan. Non-fans become initially Aware by hearing about a sport or team and learning that they exist, and that it's possible to follow the sport or team.
Once fans have Awareness, something about that sport or team Attracts them, and they become a spectator. Most fans at this stage enjoy the sport or team for entertainment value - they want to watch a great game with displays of skill, but the stakes of the sport don't necessarily matter to them that much.
If you resonate with a team, over time that Attraction can become Attachment as you become more than a spectator - you're a (casual) fan of a team. The team means more to you than just something fun to watch. You want your team to win, and your rivals to lose, especially when the stakes are high like the playoffs or a rivalry game. You'd rather watch your team beat your rivals in an ugly game than watch a beautiful game where your team lost.
When Attachment becomes Allegiance, you move from being just a fan to a Dedicated fan, when the team becomes "we" and not "them" and being a fan is part of your personal identity; when you're loyal through thick and thin and always looking forward to the start of the season no matter the odds.
Over time, as your relationship with a team changes, fans move back and forth on this spectrum. Life might take you away from your hometown to a time zone where you can't realistically watch your team every night anymore, and your Allegiance fades to Attachment or Attraction. Your favorite team changes ownership or leaves town, and it's not the same anymore, and you end up more of fan of the sport than the team.
But, no matter what stage of fandom you're at, and what you get out of following a sport or a team, we want GreenPark to have something for you. Whether you're just getting started and learning about the sport and your new favorite team and stars, or whether you're the die-hard who organizes the tailgate at every home game; GreenPark will make exciting moments even more exciting and help you get more out of your fandom.