Tuesday, August 12, 2008

All that Glitters

Jacksonville State $15
Mississippi State $26
Duke $19
Gardner-Webb $10
Virginia $27
Florida State $54
Miami $54

Total $201
Cost $150

Gross Margin $49


Does the impact of a economic slowdown or recession (technically speaking requires two quarters of negative GDP) translate into lower attendance at college football games?

Several of Atlanta's pro teams, including the Falcons and Braves, also have cited the slow economy as a challenge in sales. One team not impacted: the Georgia Bulldogs, who have sold out of football season tickets and rejected orders for new seats from customers with less than $10,651 in lifetime contributions to the athletics program.

If you have a product worth buying the answer is no…simply no a slowdown in the economy hurts those that are offering a weak product; like the Atlanta Falcons.

Georgia Tech while pacing behind last year according to the AJC article is actually doing well considering having had two teams with fanatical fans, Georgia and Clemson, last season that would tend to push up ticket sales. New coach Paul Johnson brings the new factor to the sales equation and perhaps attracts some new fans wanting to take a gamble on getting in on the ground floor. Still the cheap seat gross margin is slim and gets slimmer considering the total cost of the transactions.

Despite a good football tradition the Yellow Jackets are a fringe big time team with the additional problem of needing to compete with a full set of local pro teams and the big Dawg for the fan’s dollars.

An interesting point in the article is the recruiting of local fans without ties to the university. Traditionally there are two ways to get fans: loyal alumni and winning. As most college teams lack the marketing muscle of a NFL, MLB, NBA or even NHL organization, the success of Coach Johnson is the best hope of selling more seats.

Note the $150 seats are sold out.

One more question: Give the expense of a television ad, will GT getting enough incremental sales to make it pay?

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