What’s The Future For Field Target?
You can’t help but notice that there are not many youngsters involved in Field Target, most competition photographs wouldn’t look out of place as a DVD extra for the film Cocoon! Not sure if anyone else finds this worrying but I do!
Our target audience is probably someone around 35yrs of age having a midlife crisis and looking for something a bit cheaper than a red sports car or a hair weave but it still doesn’t answer the problem, where is everyone?
Field target is a pretty new sport, 30yrs young, but you can still count the number of sponsors it has on one hand. The money is there, you just have to ask and give them something in return. A gun for the raffle doesn’t work anymore and isn’t really the future we want to be chasing.
So, what’s going on?
Has Field Target failed to stay up with the times?
The answer is Yes and No, while FT has been bickering about the kneeling rule, logo changes and how great the old days where everyone else has pushed forward across all the available media to grab everyone’s attention.
A kid in his bedroom talking about FIFA 16 now has a collective audience viewing figures bigger than Coronation Street; he also has a Bugatti in the garage as well. So what he’s doing that a 1 million pound marketing budget can’t? He’s talking directly to his end users every day; it’s as simple as that.
As a sport we are pretty slow and not that hot at our own PR, there are lots of people who say they are going to do stuff that never happens and no-one seems to own the vision of where Field Target is going.
Maybe managing what we already do is already enough but you can’t help but wonder that if we had a few more people in place doing Reporting, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook properly if it would make a difference if anything it would be a start!
I can already hear some people saying no that’s not the answer to that question but I know for a fact they just don’t understand how things work or what PR and Marketing is because they don’t understand where the end users actually are.
From one of my other social media pages and a simple mailing list I can drive 80% of my sales on some items, I know my audience, I know what they want and when. It’s not that hard and it’s hardly a science, there’s enough data out there now for anyone to use this information and connect with people. I’m not suggesting we move straight into some kind of Nathan Barley dot com assault but it’s pretty clear that doing nothing isn’t working.
Field Target is also very hard to get into, most clubs only open their doors once a year and that’s it, I’ve no idea why but it seems to be the soup du jour. So what’s the point of driving a PR and Marketing machine towards something where the doors are actually locked? A walking paradox is what we’ve collective managed to create it would seem, a policy where the most enthusiastic and perhaps future stars are kept waiting for 1yr+. It’s no good moaning that no one is turning up to events if the door only opens once a year.
People also said that magazines weren’t interested, I called 3 of them up and they were all interested just that no-one had offered to do the work! Where are all the videos, photographs and interviews? 30yrs worth we should be buried in stuff!
For me, Field Target is a professional sport with pro-sport equipment, if it keeps projecting itself as a bloke at the end of a lane smoking a fag while dressed in full camo with some UKIP racist banter there’s little wonder why no future sponsors would be interested, hardly a USP is it?
I can only conclude that we are our own worst enemy and that until someone makes the manifesto of the future vision going forward and everyone a club level pulls their socks up we’ll always be bickering about nothing and the kneeling rule!
If you want a real world model of this then look to the BDO and PDC in darts, one is scraping a living with an old BBC licence in a scruffy working men’s club just outside Basingstoke while the other is a multi-million-pound worldwide business with all the best players.
Of course the above isn’t the whole answer but it’s not as complex as we all think.