August 26

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Shifting from Consumption to Participation

By David Millay

August 26, 2019


This weekend I bought multiple custom candles, and I was happy about it.

Yes, that’s how I’m starting this Tip.

My girlfriend and I wandered into a candle shop called The Candle Lab, and it was overwhelming like most candle shops were.

But this one let you pick up to 3 scents of the 100+ that they had, from “magnolia” to “rich mahogany,” and combine them into your own, custom scent.

So for 45 minutes, we picked out our scents and quite literally mixed the ratios of oil scents and made our own candles.

It was 100x better than normal candle shopping, all because The Candle Lab turned a commodity into an experience.  

That’s ultimately the challenge that we are faced with on gamedays now in college athletics.

Shifting our mindset from creating a great experience to consume a game to creating a gameday people can participate in.

To make the analogy between the candle shop and one of your events, I probably would have a better smelling candle just picking up a candle off the shelf, just like I’d have a better viewing experience if I stay home and watch the game from my couch.

But today’s customer and fan wants to be a part of the experience, not just a passive consumer.

So whether that’s doing things like letting fans vote on uniforms or creating a pop-up activation during pre-game, it’s important we actually create opportunities for fans to be involved when they come to campus for an event.  

David Millay

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