Wigan Athletic FC boosts online fan engagement with Advanced’s ticketing solution

Football club implements TALENT ahead of 2019/20 season

27th June 2019 – Wigan Athletic football club has selected Advanced as its ticketing partner to improve the online purchasing experience for its fans ahead of the 2019/20 season. The Championship football club has implemented Advanced’s TALENT, a cloud-based ticketing and fan engagement solution. It launched the mobile first website for its fans which went live last month, with online season ticket sales soaring by 200 per cent in the first week.

The decision followed an extensive review of the ticketing market. TALENT was chosen for its fast, robust and secure online user experience – which lies at the heart of any online ticket purchase – and its ability to create a fully customised and branded ticketing portal. Wigan Athletic is using TALENT to create a personalised ticketing experience for its fans, using it for the sale of tickets and both match day and seasonal hospitality, offering fans full mobile functionality for each.

In addition to an improved fan experience, the commercial team at Wigan Athletic was also looking for software that could provide flexible back office functionality as well as offer comprehensive commercial reporting. As a cloud-based application, TALENT allows tickets to be bought on any device, providing the ticket office flexibility to sell tickets from anywhere. The club is also taking the full benefit of the TALENT integration to Microsoft’s cloud-based reporting tool, Power BI. The newly developed reporting capabilities will be available throughout the club and enables real time executive reporting, data visualisation and analysis over revenue, ticket sales and fan data and a host of performance metrics defined by the club.

Jonty Castle, Head of Business Development and Customer Experience at Wigan Athletic FC, said: “The ticketing sector has seen rapid developments over the last few years so it was important to conduct a full review of the market. Advanced and its TALENT solution impressed us with its ability to not only transform the online experience for our fans – which was critical – but also help us transform our back office. Ticket revenues remain a critical stream for our club, and the ability to report back real-time to the CEO will ensure we are well-placed to keep informed and make the right decisions about our ticketing strategy in a more timely manner.”

TALENT is already used by some of the sporting industries biggest brands including Southampton Football Club,Goodwood, and Harlequins Rugby Union.

Wigan Athletic’s Ticket Office Manager, Michael Jolliffe, joined the club from Southampton Football Club so is familiar with the rich functionality that TALENT provides.

Jolliffe commented: “Advanced has a strong track record in the sports sector and I have complete confidence in its ticketing software. Over the last few months, we have been working collaboratively with Advanced to implement a back-office system that will help increase our club’s volume of online ticket sales through a mobile first site and deliver an intuitive online journey to encourage self-service for our fan base. We are really pleased with the final outcome and are confident TALENT will help us deliver a first-class service for our fans ahead of the 2019/20 season and beyond.”

Wigan Athletic will also be using TALENT to profile new and loyal fans to engage with them online through targeted and tailored communications based on their preferences and interests. The club will benefit from a data-rich and connected view of customer behaviour to inform fan engagement strategies – giving it complete control of its customer data – as well as tools to help it comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

“Every successful sports club has robust technology at the heart of its fan engagement strategy,” said Gordon Wilson, CEO at Advanced. “Fans now expect a fast and reliable online service around the clock, while staff want access to data that will enable them to engage with fans more intimately online and, ultimately, drive commercial success.

“The fact that Michael has been part of the team choosing to work with us again is testament to Advanced’s ticketing and e-commerce solution plus how we, as a software provider, approach partnerships. We have excellent account and product management teams to support customers like Wigan Athletic wherever they are in their digital transformation journey.”