Ideas? How to improve audience numbers? Attendance?

Now I don't mean changes to the game or plays, rule changes.

I mean how do you maintain and increase the younger audience numbers?

Let's come up with some valid ideas..

Can we get more interactive media involved?

I was thinking a live app for your phone or tablet where you can instantly go and replay the last plays and have different angles to watch it from. And at the same time have up to date stats on players and teams within seconds of the play.

And you can do this both at home and at the game.

Teams provide free WiFi, good WiFi too.

Who else?

Hard to improve on attendance numbers for tonight (near sell-out) and 2 games tomorrow (both will be sold-out)!

But what are your ideas?

  • Seed the 50/50 Draws with $100,000 to get the ball rolling
  • Reduce food and drink prices to match local restaurants
  • Kids tickets half-price in stadiums with excess capacity
  • Widely publicize the date and time of next home game
  • Create engaging "story line" leading up to every home game
  • Mardi Gras style "bead night" section
  • Blackout local TV if less than 20,000 tickets sold

I like all of these, except for the blackouts. I think blackouts hurt the fanbase for the upcoming generation of potential fans. I didn't grow up here, but I hear this from people often, that there was largely a generation lost in the blackouts. In an era when everything is so readily accessible in this instant gratification world, I think this would be a kiss of death

I really like what the Bombers are doing with flying in a group of northerners each game. This might unlock some growth in TV numbers in that area.

I think Toronto should be doing some "party buses" or something like that. Where they sponsor some buses from further away. Sell a bunch of tickets that come with a ride to and back in places that they don't feel they are getting much market penetration. They could also sell a limited number of 'front of line passes' so that people can get immediate access to the stadium....no lines...I have seen this be successful in a couple US NHL markets.

Celeb endorsement...get some big names in there....give em a free box and some air time. Most will do some level of positive social media on it...that is a big deal to youth now. And I don't mean celebrities that the 40+ crowd is into...though the odd one doesn't hurt.

The media that is hard against the CFL...gotta find some inroads there...that is huge.

BC I think is simply in need of new ownership at this point. Bless the man...there might not be a CFL without him in the past, but the time has come.

-In Ottawa there is wifi available in the stadium, same in Hamilton. I can stream the TSN game live in the stadium, get all the replays and see the stats that TSN put up - immediately
-Why seed the 50/50 draw with $100,000? what good would that do?
-why reduce food and drink prices to match local restaurants? concessions are a huge money maker for CFL teams and looking at the revenue the fans are gladly paying. In Toronto they have already tried the cheap drinks and $4 beers before the game, it doesn't seem to work.
-kids tickets half price? maybe in Toronto or BC where they are having attendance problem but that would be lost revenue in other cities where they are getting full price for seats.
-Widely publicize the date and time of the next game??? it's already "widely publicized" if you go to a game it's broadcast over the loudspeaker, everyone has the internet and you can easily see the date and times of games!!
-Mardi Gras - just ask the people in Ottawa about the last time they tried that. A total disaster - You obviously don't understand the concept behind the beads and Mardi Gras but you don't give kids half price tickets and then do a Mardi Gras night...................... :oops: :oops:
-Blackout the game?? yes that would give more exposure to the game???. when a game is blacked out it means no one in the local area gets to see it. TSN has paid the CFL $42 MILLION dollars to broadcast games, TSN owns the rights and they must sell ad revenue to pay their bills. If they black out games then sponsors don't get their product advertised. :? :?

For building TV audiences. Have at least one consistent day AND start time for a game each week for at least a good chunk of the season so it becomes routine for fans to know at that time of day - on that day each week that they can count on a CFL game being on. Other sports/leagues do that.

NFL you know exactly every single week what times the games are. (Sunday 1PM, 4PM, 8:30PM and Monday 8:30PM ET.)

HNIC - 7:00PM and 10:00PM ET Saturdays

PGA - pretty consistently 3:00PM ET Saturdays and Sundays

ESPN Sunday night baseball - almost always 8:00PM ET starts

CFL - start times are a little bit all over the map.

Agree. I love the Thursday night, Friday night, Saturday Double Header.

This. I've been saying this for years. The casual fan isn't as inclined to look up game times, but it's easier when it's the same time all of the time, even for just one or two slots each week.

Thursday night games in the summer could always start at 8pm ET and are hosted by Eastern teams or Winnipeg. Friday night games could always start at 9pm ET and would always be hosted by Calgary, Edmonton, or Saskatchewan. Saturday games could start at 7pm ET and could be hosted by anybody. And then there would be a floater game on either Saturday or Sunday. In the Fall, you lose the Thursday games and Saturday double headers become the norm (afternoon game + 7pm ET game). I think it's important to make it accessible to the Eastern markets since that's where the support lags a bit (I'm looking at Toronto and Montreal here). Plus, if we want a tenth team in the Maritimes, we want to avoid 11pm AT starts for those guys watching on TV.

Have al the games after labour day. Or start in august and compress the schedule

Near sell out!!

Montreal 18,728 ??
Winnipeg 30,165 Great job bomber fans

In my opinion, the biggest long-term barrier the CFL faces is the concussion and injury question. It's responsible for declining grassroots enrolment, it's responsible for fewer families taking their kids out to games, it's responsible for that awkward PR moment during the Grey Cup when the question comes up.

The fix for that is simple, adjust the rules so high hits on the QB, not at the hip are penalties, that blindside helmet to helmet contact won't be swept under the rug and get serious on discipline. The fact Duron Carter is walking away from a blatantly intentional major foul with just a fine is absurd.

Don't change video review to eliminate the idiot decisions, long delays, lack of explanation of video review decision and coaches challenges that are only fishing expeditions there is no point is trying any non-game gimmicks.

Young people have a very short attention span, the long, multiple video review delays have they changing channels and if they won't watch on TV they definitely won't by a ticket.

I agree with Hammer; head injuries are the other major issue that is killing the game.

First fix the game then try the gimmicks.

Contact sport though, as it is today. NHL was fine with Semenko and such, RIP Dave BTW,, going out to goon and fight their way to a SC.

Football is a purer contact sport than hockey ever will hope to be. You can't fight to win a championship in football like the Broadstreet Bullies in Philly didd winning the SC in the NHL with goon such tactics.

So do I, at least for games up until Labour Day. Games should then shift to Friday night, Saturday late afternoon/early evening, and sunday afternoon. After Thanksgiving, no night games other than FNF.

Celebrity endorsements. Particularly in the chronically bored Toronto market. It will generate CFL exposure beyond football. If they're in town, they should be at the Argo games where they are seen and recorded, and generating social media buzz. Have 'em pitch their latest project if that's what it takes to get them on camera enjoying the game. Better yet, get multiple celebrities hanging out at the game, as if it's THE place to hang out. Put 'em on billboards too. Get 'em to mention their great experience on their next talk show appearance, which will eventually show up on Youtube and other sites, adding future endorsement value.

So a few points. Turn around can only go two ways. Wasn't going to reply as most have deaf ears. However different points are good. Been watching CFL for a few years. First Game 1956.
Why to I love CFL and its quality play!!!!!!!!!!
Quote: "I mean how do you maintain and increase the younger audience numbers?"

What attracted me to CFL. Meeting players in the street, at practice invites, malls everywhere. Eskies ran youth football camps. Worked for the CFL BUT Where given full time jobs which paid very well. Hate to say given but community wanted them as they new they would never leave a good situation. So lets TRY to keep players from changing teams every second year.
Who did Jackie Parker, Ron Lancaster, Joe Kapp, Russ Jackson, Antony Callvio, Bernie the rife,
Condrege Holloway, Dieter Brock, Bill Simon's, play for????????
They sign and played for many years became a part of community.

Remember Ed Hervey and the collapse of Eskies this year. OR NOT.
Community wanted access to players. You get paid $60,000 from Eskies, Job $70,000
Love by community!!! Not Bad. Or jump players around. RUN for the CASH
Takes time!!!!

Second choice is USA development league. 6 Canadian teams 12 American.
New Rules, new system, Great step from college to NFL. Big cities only, reasonable tickets and beer. FAST PLAY WITH BIG INCENTIVES.
Sponsor by NFL. Deep Deep pockets. If I owned a CFL team, I'm in.

Farm out Jeff Hunt to every CFL city facing adversity. The man is a genius when it comes to marketing. He has tapped into the younger crowd who like to watch the game from the "bar rail", who like to wander around a bit. He has established a link with youth football for selling fifty-fifty tickets (the parents do the selling). We RB fans feel like were part of the team #RNation! Free Wi-Fi, party atmosphere, great scoreboard (a long standing issue in Ottawa), excellent sight lines and seats. We've got it all here in the town that fun forgot!

I have to admit I didn't read this whole thread so maybe what I have to say has already been mentioned.

#1 NO BLACKOUTS PLEASE! Biggest mistake you could possibly make, nothing worse for a young fan than to not be able to watch his favorite team. There are a lot of people who can not afford such luxuries as taking the kids to a ball game.... way way too many. I say this from experience.

My suggestion starts right here with the CFL's bestest fans.
We all need to quit our bellyaching with the refs, every game it's waaa this and waa that did you see what they called waa how could they do that waaa what are they watching waaa I can't believe it waaa I give up waaa we lost because they screwed us waa waa waaa.

Now what potential new fan is gonna think oh hey I should follow that sheet... think about it if you like.

It's great to be excited about the game but if a call does not go your teams way just fess up and hope for better results next time.

FWIW I too get frustrated at some of the calls but realizing how incredibly difficult it is to make the call in the first place helps. The worst thing you can do is put the blame on the refs and turn to your friends and say oh man the refs costs us that one. I say no it's poor play cost your team the game %100 of the time every time.

The review system is working just fine IMO, not perfect because we are all human after all but working as intended.

Want new viewers? How about a slogan like CFL - Home of the best ref's in the world
Wanna make a cool video? How about CFL - Home of the toughest refs in the world, then show some crazy hits on the ref - finish it with the recent Hill indecent.

Haven't read every post, but I would suggest the league spending the money not just on marketing, but information gathering in each CFL city of what the hardcore and casual fan is looking for.

National campaigns can work, but 9 specific campaigns would work better. What works in Sask, probably won't work in Toronto. What works in Ottawa, may not work in Vancouver.

Why can the MLS which is in the top 20 of Soccer leagues in the World, can find 25k-35k hardcore fans that come to everygame, but in those same markets, the CFL is struggling to get 15k-20k. And the CFL is #2 in pro football leagues.

So its not based on league rank, its based on perceptions.