NFL UK has proved to be a successful project as it attracts significant attention in the country where such well—established sports as soccer, Formula 1, rugby are still very popular. Clearly, NFL UK has a lot of issues as it has quite insignificant number of fans (compared to the USA). Some of the events organized, which were quite expensive, did not bring a revenue but were promotional in character. It is also important to remember that the organization had extremely bad times a number of years ago.
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Nonetheless, the organization can achieve really high results and expand considerably. It can generate a significant amount of money in revenue. Alistair Kirkwood, NFL UK managing director, has a number of good ideas that can make the organization expand effectively.
UK franchise can be a good idea, as it is estimated that it can provide $200 million in revenues within two years. Of course, this can face certain opposition especially from US fans and cities that cannot obtain a franchise. However, it is necessary to explain (launch a large-scale program) that this is an important step in popularizing the American sport (as well as culture) worldwide.
Another important step is to make sure that the Super Bowl game can be held in the UK (London or Edinburgh) as it is one of the most spectacular and significant sport events. This can increase the number of fans of the game in the UK as well as in other countries worldwide. Of course, American fans can be resistant to this idea as the Super Bowl game is seen as another national holiday in the USA. Many Americans believe that this is something that cannot be taken away from Americans.
It can be a good idea to launch the Super Bowl International that will be held in different countries after a draw ceremony. Clearly, the UK is not ready for such a large-scale venue. Therefore, the first Super Bowl International can be held in Canada where lots of fans are waiting for that.
Meanwhile, the educational and promotional programs in the UK will continue to attract as many fans and viewers as possible. Of course, it is crucial to continue studying the market and developing strategies to meet potential and existing customers’ needs.
It is clear that the industry is developing at a high pace and there are loads of opportunities for the organization in the UK as well as other countries. People are looking for new experiences and globalization contributes to popularization of some kinds of sports. UK soccer fans (including hooligans) show that people of the UK can be avid fans of a sport game. Hence, the NFL UK has numerous prospects in the region.
Of course, ineffective management can lead to a complete failure and it already happened in the late 1990s when many games were canceled. Therefore, NFL UK management has to understand the needs of British people and be able to respond to them. There are still many people who simply do not understand the concept of the game and, hence, do not like it.
Promotion, education and research are key factors of the future success of the organization. Some strategies employed in Japan can be utilized in the UK. Collaboration with colleges and schools can be important. Sufficient media coverage and convenient timetables can make the games more popular as well.