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Four Cornerstones of Digital Strategy: Improve participation and grow your sport nationally - Part 2

View all · 08 Jun 2018 · revolutioniseSPORT

This article is the second in a series of four articles exploring the Four Cornerstones of Digital Strategy. You can read the previous article here.


"We use technology, but to be honest with you, it's pretty rubbish."

This is the message repeated loud and clear by peak sporting bodies nationwide when asked about their use and understanding of digital technology in sport. Our analysis of over 150 governing bodies in Australia indicates that Australian sport is in the midst of change - a paradigm shift where governing bodies are no longer content with a technology solution that is "good enough". Sports are coming to grips with the fact that they must have a cohesive strategy to unify the direction of their digital assets.

Digital strategy is more than just 'having a Facebook'; it's about knowing how and when to use your digital assets, and being able to draw meaningful and measurable analytics to grow your sport in line with your strategic plan.

Here, we explain how sports can gain the understanding and practical tools to implement the four cornerstones of successful digital strategy:

1. Collecting meaningful data from your members

2. Analysing and drawing insights from membership data

3. Maximising the reach and impact of social media

4. Building a strong, integrated and professional website

Cornerstone #2: Data Analysis & Insights

Most sports collect a large volume of data about their members - from basic demographic data, event and competition histories to payment information and officiating accreditation. However, for many sports, this data is siloed amongst different vendors and systems, without any useful way to connect, aggregate, or draw actionable insights from the data.

This multiple-data-silo approach can also lead to confusion for members, who, for example, may have to register through one vendor portal, enter their results through a second, and purchase merchandise through a third.

“Effective integration is critical to achieve the scale and whole-of-sport management that will enable a sport to grow and compete in the marketplace… only a sport fully integrated in this fashion can plan strategically for the benefit of the whole sport and operate with optimal efficiency.”

-- Australia’s Winning Edge, Australian Sports Commission

In interviews conducted with over 150 N/SSOs across Australia, fewer than 20% could quickly identify key metrics about their membership (e.g. age, gender or geographic distribution).

Organising and extracting insights from membership data is key to governance - how can a sport plan for the future without an accurate picture of both past and present?

To plan for the future, sports should consider abandoning the multiple-data- silo approach, and focus on one vendor, one pathway, and one interface for their members.

Your membership management provider should allow you to:

  • Collect a range of membership information
  • Disseminate news and information to members
  • Organise events
  • Sell merchandise
  • Organise competition fixtures and results
  • Have an integrated online presence

Most importantly, your solution provider should be able to provide you with quick, easy access to synthesised, high-level reporting drawn directly from your membership data. Don’t work for the system - make the system work for you.

Stay tuned in the coming days for our third article, Cornerstone #3: Social Media Presence, to learn more about maximising reach and impact of your social media channels to drive membership growth and engagement.


Cass Simonetti is the Sports Ecosystem Specialist at revolutioniseSPORT, the emerging market leader in online sports management in Australia. The platform services a range of grassroots clubs and peak sporting bodies, and currently supports over 125 governing bodies in Australia. To find out more, visit


Originally published on LinkedIn.