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  • Writer's pictureEvan Fieldstone

Get ready to play "Minty Ball"

Updated: Dec 30, 2023

A new approach to team loyalty inspired by data from outside sports

Everyone in sports knows the Moneyball story.

Facing harsh economic realities, and burdened by an unrelenting desire to win, Billy Beane decided to blaze a new trail. He knew he couldn't keep doing the same things and expect different results. So, armed with little more than data from a baseball outsider and an unrelenting desire to win, he defined the problem clearly, and made plans to solve it.

"The problem we're trying to solve is that there are rich teams and there are poor teams. Then there's fifty feet of crap, and then there's us..." Billy Beane

When he uttered these word, Mr. Beane wasn't talking about his team's loyalty program, but he might as well have been. Loyalty programs is sports have been around for years with little innovation in their business models. They often begin with optimism and end abruptly when they're judged as being not worth the time, effort or money.

But just as the A's GM decided to tap into baseball outsider, Bill James' data-driven philosophy, sports marketers could look outside sports for inspiration. There are other industries, similar to sports, that have cracked the loyalty and produced methods that, once adapted to sports, could lift sports loyalty from the ashes.

"MintyBall" is an innovative approach to sports franchise revenue generation inspired by the principles of "Moneyball." Just as baseball's conventional metrics were challenged in Moneyball, MintyBall posits that traditional approaches to managing loyalty in sports are overlooking hidden value. 

The "Mint" in MintyBall refers to a virtual, private label currency—akin to airline points—that teams can create. By leveraging this currency, teams can sell points (Mint) to sponsors and fans, using it as a powerful lever to spur growth in the team economy. This unique digital currency becomes a valuable asset for teams. Teams can sell it to sponsors who, in turn, offer it as perks to fans or use it in promotional campaigns. 

The beauty of MintyBall is that it unlocks synergies between team revenue streams (i.e., sponsorship, ticketing and ancillary), enabling teams to get more out of each one. This, in turn, creates incremental revenues that were previously untapped and raises the value of the franchise. Done well, we believe Minty Ball will make the team more profitable, drive sponsor success and inspire greater loyalty from fans.

MintyBall will face criticism. Many seasoned sports executives will be skeptical about whether the airline model can or should be adapted for sports. "Points are liabilities," they'll say. "Sports and airlines are two different businesses." Of course these executives will be correct until someone comes along with the same zeal as Billy Beane, and proves them wrong.

At Minty Sports we are looking for that enlightened first mover, akin to Billy Beane in the Moneyball era, to be help showcase the transformative potential of MintyBall to revolutionize sports loyalty strategies, unlock latent revenue potential, and lift fan experiences to new levels.


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