Archive for September, 2011

Third party housing services, site selection, and room rebates

September 29, 2011

When is it a good idea to use a third party to book rooms? Should the third party also select cities? What constitutes a “reasonable” total amount of up-charge per room?

In my opinion, the answers are sometimes, never, and nothing above $5-10.

There can be circumstances when the CVB or the event simply does not have the capability to book rooms. At these times a reputable housing service can be of significant assistance. Be sure, however, to check the amount of experience with sports events. The type, kind, and location of each property in relation to the competition sites are of the highest importance to a successful sports event.

Many third party services have just discovered sports events. Only a very few have been at it for around ten years, and I know of only one that started in sports.

I cannot imagine an acceptable set of circumstances allowing the housing service to select sites…unless the event owner just does not want to do the work (they are content to find out what the quality of the competition sites and housing arrangements are on arrival!) or, worse, they would rather get a guaranteed payout per room above and beyond all other factors.

“We are only in this for the kids!” Sure.

There is no place in our industry for event owners who do not care enough about their participants to vet the details versus other choices. There is also no place for host organizations who simply want a commission on each room above all other factors.

“Stay to play” should not be used to cover for these practices.

We should give more thought to team registration fees. Why not include any up-charges in that fee? Anything else becomes an additional tax on participants…the very folks we work so hard to get to town.

How about you? What do you think?

-Don

How the Certified Sports Event Executive Program Has Helped Me Advance In My Career

September 20, 2011

The Certified Sports Event Executive (CSEE) Program is a continuing education program open only to NASC Members.   The CSEE program provides participants with up-to-date, useful knowledge on an array of topics that are meant to increase your productivity, efficiency and effectiveness in your job.  At the completion of the program, each participant receives the CSEE designation. The CSEE Program has been an extremely useful tool in my career, and I am a proud graduate.

I have beenin the Sports Industry for 13 years, and I owe a large thank you to the NASC and its CSEE Program.  The CSEE Program has kept me updated on key issues and topics that are directly related to this career.  Although, I have worked in many different areas of the Sports Industry: Collegiate Athletic Department  (Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas), Event Rights Holder (NAIA), Sports Commission (Olathe, Kansas Sports Commission) and now a Convention and Visitors Bureau (Bryan-College Station, Texas), I have relied on the knowledge I have gained from CSEE in each career move.

Perhaps one of the most noticeable effects I have experienced by obtaining my CSEE has been in my current position at the Bryan-College Station Convention and Visitors Bureau.  Once I had completed the CSEE program, I began to see that I was more respected in the industry, community and by my supervisor.  In fact, I was promoted from the Director of Sports to the Director of Sales-Sports & Conventions.  I am now responsible for both the sports market and conventions market for the bureau.  I contribute this success to CSEE and use the education I have received through the program to achieve my career goals every day.  Also, participants of the program are so tight knit that I know I can contact any one of the CSEE graduates or program participants to get best practices and useful ideas when I need assistance.  If you are wondering if the CSEE Program would be a good investment for you or your current place of business…my answer is a resounding YES!!!

~ Kindra

Kindra Fry, CSEE Bryan-College Station Convention and Visitors Bureau
Kindra is the Director of Sports for the Bryan-College Station Convention and Visitors Bureau where she has been since 2004. The sports market in Bryan-College Station is thriving and in her time in Aggieland, Kindra has increased hotel room nights by 300%. Prior to the convention and visitors bureau world, she served as the marketing assistant and an event coordinator with the NAIA and has experience in the collegiate athletics field as well. Kindra has been a member of NASC since 2002 and was awarded her CSEE in April 2008. Phone: (979) 595-2686, Email: kindra@bcscvb.org

Why attend the NASC Sports Event Symposium?

September 13, 2011

The 2012 NASC Sports Event Symposium in Hartford marks the twentieth anniversary of the NASC! As one of our founders I was involved in all of the planning meetings leading to the initial meeting in 1992 and have remained involved ever since. From 1989 to 1998 I served as the executive director of what was the Greater Cincinnati Sports & Events Commission, a privately funded not-for-profit that represented our market. In order to be competitive, I attended every meeting the NASC held. Missing a meeting was unthinkable.

You need to do the same.

  • To be competitive you simply must make sales contacts at the symposium!
  • To be competitive you simply must attend special sessions designed specifically to help you get at least your share of the market!
  • To be competitive you simply must learn from your peers. You could, of course, make your own mistakes but avoiding them can sure help you stay employed!

You cannot find another conference, meeting, or trade show where you can accomplish all of these tasks! No one but the NASC combines lead generation with the latest developments and peer-to-peer learning.

Plus, we are YOUR association. We have set new attendance records every year, including 2011. At that, 125 member organizations stayed home! It can be tough out there without help.

Over 5000 persons attended the recent ASAE meetings in St. Louis. The biggest take-away for members were the education sessions, not lead generation.

Ninety-two percent (92%) of NASC Sports Event Symposium attendees report developing business as the result of attendance at the symposium.

The question is not why to attend…the question is, how can you miss it? It costs a lot more in lost business to stay home.

Next year’s budgets are in process. Make sure Hartford is in the mix.

– Don

Youth Basketball and the NCAA

September 6, 2011

Legislation is in place to regulate the use of on campus basketball facilities. At present, boys (or men’s as described by the NCAA) basketball is subject to new restrictions on use. Virtually identical legislation covering girls/women’s basketball is on its way to implementation.

In general, the legislation now prohibits the use of on campus basketball facilities for non-scholastic boys/men’s basketball events or practices that include prospective student-athletes (anyone that has started classes for the seventh grade). This extends to off campus sites that are regularly used by the institution for practices or competition. The legislation affects all NCAA Division I member institutions.

Assuming the companion legislation is approved covering the girls/woman’s game, the same restrictions will be in place.

An institution may host basketball-related events that are part of officially recognized state multi-sports events (state games).

Institutions may host a non-scholastic event that involves men’s prospective student athletes as long as the athletes reside within a 50 mile radius of campus.

Events that do not include prospective student-athletes may continue to take place, although it is recognized that younger age group competition and practice does not generally take place on college or university campuses.

Some might say this is a case of the actions of the few impacting the actions of the many, but it will certainly bring to an end a significant number of on-campus events/tournaments that showcase prospective student-athletes. No distinction is made between not-for-profit and for-profit sponsoring organizations. We realize this will have a negative impact on a significant number of room night producing events.

The NCAA, like the NASC, is a member service organization. This legislation is a reflection of the desires of membership.  The situation is a reminder that it often takes more than a successful bid to get business. The events themselves must be conducted properly and ethically to insure their continued success.

-Don