Media Post News came out with some interesting market research in terms of fan loyalty for professional sports. Baseball and football are tied for "most loyal fans" based on 2010 Brand Keys Sports Loyalty Index. The index is measured by the following parameters:
- pure entertainment, or how well a team does, and how exciting they are
- authenticity, or how well they play as a team, which can be helped by new venues and management
- fan bonding, or the respect and admiration fans have for players
- history and tradition, meaning the role a team plays in a fan's and a community's rituals, institutions and beliefs
Robert Passikoff, the president of Brand Keys had this to say about the sport of hockey...
...hockey's problem is that it isn't TV-friendly, and because of players' gear, is not amenable to player-fan loyalty. "It's very hard to set up a situation where you can bond with players. They all look the same." He says hockey is prone to building loyalty on pure entertainment based on wins and losses because "the truth is hockey is exciting even when it's a crappy game."
Sounds like he's a hockey fan. That last statement is certainly is true for me. I'd rather watch a game between the Edmonton Oilers and the Florida Panthers than any professional basketball game and pretty much any MLB/NFL game aside from the Tigers/Lions.
The Brand Keys Index also named the top 5 teams in each sport based on fan loyalty. Check this out:
For the NHL: Detroit Red Wings, Philadelphia Flyers, San Jose Sharks, New Jersey Devils and Boston Bruins.
As if we neeed anymore proof that we're loyal to the Winged Wheel.
Chicago? Pittsburgh? Oh that's right...your teams almost left town...sometimes on more than one occasion. Sorry (not really).