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Marketing Minds want to know..... - 03-16-2010, 11:27 AM

Is the lack of a true professional pool league a result of the players not getting their collective chit together, or is it a lack of sponsorship to draw enough money into it?
  
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03-16-2010, 11:29 AM

From what others have been saying on here for a long time. I am going to go with BOTH.


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03-16-2010, 11:34 AM

From a Marketing perspective.... define TRUE Professional League?

If it means you get money for the wins you have when you play in your weekly tournaments or leagues... their are already lots of LEAGUES that provide this.

If you are talking about MILLIONS... check with the APA Owners... they make a lot of money.

If you are talking about the average pool players? Beer and social gatherings will do just nicely.

Why do you ask? are you a player or a marketing agent?

or the short answer... BOTH


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03-16-2010, 11:47 AM

i guess what im really asking is what kind of sponsorship money would it take to set up a tour that would draw out ALL the big name players for something like a 25 tournament circuit.
  
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Best Guess - 03-16-2010, 12:14 PM

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Originally Posted by jdxprs View Post
i guess what im really asking is what kind of sponsorship money would it take to set up a tour that would draw out ALL the big name players for something like a 25 tournament circuit.
Based on your estimate of a 25 tournament circuit,approximately $7.5-$10.0 Million. This is partly based on a $100,000 per tournament prize fund with a $500,000 end of year Champions Tournament. There is not enough room in this thread to detail everything involved,but it is possible to do what you are asking. It will never be done by the industry alone. We will need venture capital to make it work.


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03-16-2010, 01:00 PM

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Originally Posted by cajunfats View Post
Based on your estimate of a 25 tournament circuit,approximately $7.5-$10.0 Million. This is partly based on a $100,000 per tournament prize fund with a $500,000 end of year Champions Tournament. There is not enough room in this thread to detail everything involved,but it is possible to do what you are asking. It will never be done by the industry alone. We will need venture capital to make it work.
With a budget like that, I could knock that beeyatch outta tha park!

The IPT, allegedy, put 10 million into it and died in it's first two tour stops.
  
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Correct! - 03-16-2010, 01:50 PM

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Originally Posted by CrownCityCorey View Post
With a budget like that, I could knock that beeyatch outta tha park!

The IPT, allegedy, put 10 million into it and died in it's first two tour stops.
Corey,you are right. The IPT may have had good intentions,but it appears they were short sighted on costs,organization,and return on investment. You know as well as anyone the costs of putting together events,and the little costs that keep adding up,and up,and up. I have worked in the Marketing Department at the Largest Native American Casino in Louisiana,and they have an Entertainment /Events Budget that would not be far from the estimates I gave(typical 1 night concert cost $100,000). I have also worked at the BCA,and have seen the logistics for the BCA Amateur and World Championship Events. You know that providing for these events is also expensive. I have no doubt with the collective talent from the people here at AZ,that beeyatch would sail over the ocean and around the world!


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03-16-2010, 02:54 PM

so based on prize money alone, the tour would need about 3 million. nascar has the SPRINT cup. seems to me, an international company should be willing to sponsor something like this for such a small amount.

the other 7 million you speak of is for renting facilities, equipment and things of that nature?

what are the best 25 pool rooms in the country? this could be an interesting way to do the tour and keep costs more reasonable. events could be bracketed into different days the way the world series of poker is now.

a large hotel/casino would be an obvious choice for a championship end of year event. shouldnt be too hard to find a hotel casino looking for an outragous number of gambling pool players.
  
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Details and Locations - 03-16-2010, 03:12 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdxprs View Post
so based on prize money alone, the tour would need about 3 million. nascar has the SPRINT cup. seems to me, an international company should be willing to sponsor something like this for such a small amount.

the other 7 million you speak of is for renting facilities, equipment and things of that nature?

what are the best 25 pool rooms in the country? this could be an interesting way to do the tour and keep costs more reasonable. events could be bracketed into different days the way the world series of poker is now.

a large hotel/casino would be an obvious choice for a championship end of year event. shouldnt be too hard to find a hotel casino looking for an outragous number of gambling pool players.
Yes,that is true. The numbers appear to be relative to what major sports organizations allocate to subordinate entities. There are plenty of structured organizations out there and we needn't reinvent the wheel. We would like to see a renowned worldwide name to attach to the tour. To get such a commitment is part of the strategy. There may be possibilities for Pool rooms to be involved,but they would not be the priority locations. Neither would Casino's except for perhaps a special event. This will require innovative thinking. Your analogy towards the WSP events has merit. I hope we discuss it further.


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03-16-2010, 04:30 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by cajunfats View Post
Corey,you are right. The IPT may have had good intentions,but it appears they were short sighted on costs,organization,and return on investment. You know as well as anyone the costs of putting together events,and the little costs that keep adding up,and up,and up. I have worked in the Marketing Department at the Largest Native American Casino in Louisiana,and they have an Entertainment /Events Budget that would not be far from the estimates I gave(typical 1 night concert cost $100,000). I have also worked at the BCA,and have seen the logistics for the BCA Amateur and World Championship Events. You know that providing for these events is also expensive. I have no doubt with the collective talent from the people here at AZ,that beeyatch would sail over the ocean and around the world!
Which casino did you work for?
  
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03-16-2010, 04:46 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by cajunfats View Post
Based on your estimate of a 25 tournament circuit,approximately $7.5-$10.0 Million. This is partly based on a $100,000 per tournament prize fund with a $500,000 end of year Champions Tournament. There is not enough room in this thread to detail everything involved,but it is possible to do what you are asking. It will never be done by the industry alone. We will need venture capital to make it work.


I'm in for $10.00. Anybody else?


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03-16-2010, 05:40 PM

There's just no interest. No demand for it.


I have stepped away from the game and away from the pool world for long enough periods of time where I could clear my mind and get a proper perspective.

That said, no one really cares about pool. There are local or region tours, like the Seminole Tour (Florida Pro Tour). How many people show up to that? Hardly any. Even among all the amateur players and lovers of the game - only a fraction, a small one at that, shows up to watch these events. And that's when it's local. Forget having to drive out someplace, pay for lodging etcetera.

What you see at major events is nothing more than all the hard core enthusiasts and lovers of the game. Such as at the SBE, events in Vegas, or big tourneys. Many of whom are some how tied to the industry. Which in my opinion, disqualifies them as being categorized as fans. The idea being, pool needs support by a fan base other than industry people. There's no rush at the door of any professional event in pool.

Imagine 25,000 people wanting to attend the US Open, but there's only room at the event center for 10,000. Would be quite a venue. Ticket prices would climb. It would be large enough to get TV coverage at the least on some cable channel as a rerun at worst. Someone would sponsor it other than billiard industry. The cable sports channel would pay to have it, rather than get paid to run it. Pool pays for pool on TV which is why 100% of the commercials during televised pool are billiard industry commercials. The influx of fans would generate business for local hotels/motels, restaurants etcetera. Who would then get on board....Another thing, if 25,000 people wanted to show, that means 10x as many or more WILL BE watching it or wanting to watch it on TV. For every 1 that shows, there's at least 10 that want to see it on the tube.


You can talk big sponsors all you want. Choose any big corporation. Why would they spend their money sponsoring pool? They sponsor sports because it's an advertisement for them. For advertising to work, it requires exposure. How many eyeballs are going to see a sponsor's banner at a pool tournament? Not many. I don't care if you stream it on the web.

It's not enough eyes to justify the kind of money you folks are talking about. That money is better spent on sports that get on TV or have huge following.

That's what I'm talking about when it comes to perspective. Too many people in the "pool world" get their mind clouded up thinking pool is a lot bigger than it really is. It isn't. It's small.


The fact remains, money has to come from somewhere. In all other sports, it ultimately comes from the fans. A sport needs many paying fans for sponsors to jump on board. Those sponsors aren't doing it for free. When they sponsor, they advertise. They expect those ads and that sponsorship to translate into profits/sales. Fans buy their products or services.

So, where are all the pool fans? Hardly any.

A note on participation - that is what dooms pool. It's the easiest game to participate in. Also the cheapest. Just drive to the local pool hall and pay your $8/hr on a Friday night prime time. That's dirt cheap peanuts compared to anything else.

While we the players understand the eliteness and excellence of what top play is like and how hard it is to achieve, the average person has no clue.

Therefore, pool has no "awe" to it. People tend to follow and ultimately worship sports and athletes that do things they consider super human. It gets into the psychology of sports and sports history going all the way back to the ancient Olympics.

Pool is one of the hardest sports (or games) to gain an understanding for its difficulty. Also, people don't respect a table game in a bar or pool hall in the same way, one that they can play themselves whenever.

Even if they haven't played pool, it looks easy or silly to them. In the psyche of the masses, it doesn't appear difficult or something that requires a lifetime of training to reach an elite level.

Whereas, these same people probably tossed a baseball around even if they didn't play organized baseball as a youth. They know it's something special to be able to throw a 100mph fast ball AND hit the strike zone. They know how impressive it is for a golfer to drive the ball hundreds of hards AND be that accurate or to nail a 45ft putt on a slanted green. Or to kick a 52 yard field goal.....

The examples go on and on.


Finally, there's the excitement factor. Pool just isn't exciting for the average person. The same can be said of golf, but golf has it going in one critical area that makes up for the lack of items below - it has an incredible perception among the masses of being an extremely difficult and skilled game. Which it is. So much so, that becoming a pro, in the view of the fans, separates you in talent and qualities as a human being. Getting back to that super human ability perception. A tiny bit of that can be found in pool - only among hard core pool fans (the average banger has no clue who these people are)...such as amazing play by Efren Reyes, huge straight pool runs by Schmidt, 3-cushion play by Sayginer...There's no doubt many of us in the pool world feel that these people possess something that we will never possess. Now, take that feeling and multiply it by millions and you have the fans of golf, tennis, baseball, football, basketball.....


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03-16-2010, 05:51 PM

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Originally Posted by Bola Ocho View Post
There's just no interest. No demand for it.


I have stepped away from the game and away from the pool world for long enough periods of time where I could clear my mind and get a proper perspective.

That said, no one really cares about pool. There are local or region tours, like the Seminole Tour (Florida Pro Tour). How many people show up to that? Hardly any. Even among all the amateur players and lovers of the game - only a fraction, a small one at that, shows up to watch these events. And that's when it's local. Forget having to drive out someplace, pay for lodging etcetera.

What you see at major events is nothing more than all the hard core enthusiasts and lovers of the game. Such as at the SBE, events in Vegas, or big tourneys. Many of whom are some how tied to the industry. Which in my opinion, disqualifies them as being categorized as fans. The idea being, pool needs support by a fan base other than industry people. There's no rush at the door of any professional event in pool.

Imagine 25,000 people wanting to attend the US Open, but there's only room at the event center for 10,000. Would be quite a venue. Ticket prices would climb. It would be large enough to get TV coverage at the least on some cable channel as a rerun at worst. Someone would sponsor it other than billiard industry. The cable sports channel would pay to have it, rather than get paid to run it. Pool pays for pool on TV which is why 100% of the commercials during televised pool are billiard industry commercials. The influx of fans would generate business for local hotels/motels, restaurants etcetera. Who would then get on board....Another thing, if 25,000 people wanted to show, that means 10x as many or more WILL BE watching it or wanting to watch it on TV. For every 1 that shows, there's at least 10 that want to see it on the tube.


You can talk big sponsors all you want. Choose any big corporation. Why would they spend their money sponsoring pool? They sponsor sports because it's an advertisement for them. For advertising to work, it requires exposure. How many eyeballs are going to see a sponsor's banner at a pool tournament? Not many. I don't care if you stream it on the web.

It's not enough eyes to justify the kind of money you folks are talking about. That money is better spent on sports that get on TV or have huge following.

That's what I'm talking about when it comes to perspective. Too many people in the "pool world" get their mind clouded up thinking pool is a lot bigger than it really is. It isn't. It's small.


The fact remains, money has to come from somewhere. In all other sports, it ultimately comes from the fans. A sport needs many paying fans for sponsors to jump on board. Those sponsors aren't doing it for free. When they sponsor, they advertise. They expect those ads and that sponsorship to translate into profits/sales. Fans buy their products or services.

So, where are all the pool fans? Hardly any.

A note on participation - that is what dooms pool. It's the easiest game to participate in. Also the cheapest. Just drive to the local pool hall and pay your $8/hr on a Friday night prime time. That's dirt cheap peanuts compared to anything else.

While we the players understand the eliteness and excellence of what top play is like and how hard it is to achieve, the average person has no clue.

Therefore, pool has no "awe" to it. People tend to follow and ultimately worship sports and athletes that do things they consider super human. It gets into the psychology of sports and sports history going all the way back to the ancient Olympics.

Pool is one of the hardest sports (or games) to gain an understanding for its difficulty. Also, people don't respect a table game in a bar or pool hall in the same way, one that they can play themselves whenever.

Even if they haven't played pool, it looks easy or silly to them. In the psyche of the masses, it doesn't appear difficult or something that requires a lifetime of training to reach an elite level.

Whereas, these same people probably tossed a baseball around even if they didn't play organized baseball as a youth. They know it's something special to be able to throw a 100mph fast ball AND hit the strike zone. They know how impressive it is for a golfer to drive the ball hundreds of hards AND be that accurate or to nail a 45ft putt on a slanted green. Or to kick a 52 yard field goal.....

The examples go on and on.


Finally, there's the excitement factor. Pool just isn't exciting for the average person. The same can be said of golf, but golf has it going in one critical area that makes up for the lack of items below - it has an incredible perception among the masses of being an extremely difficult and skilled game. Which it is. So much so, that becoming a pro, in the view of the fans, separates you in talent and qualities as a human being. Getting back to that super human ability perception. A tiny bit of that can be found in pool - only among hard core pool fans (the average banger has no clue who these people are)...such as amazing play by Efren Reyes, huge straight pool runs by Schmidt, 3-cushion play by Sayginer...There's no doubt many of us in the pool world feel that these people possess something that we will never possess. Now, take that feeling and multiply it by millions and you have the fans of golf, tennis, baseball, football, basketball.....
Great perspective and very well stated.
  
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03-16-2010, 06:17 PM

Our perspective here on AZB is somewhat distorted. And not just that the outside world of casual players would flock to watch a professional pool tour, which is doubtful. When a pro event of 100 of the best players in the world plays to an empty room when it is taking place in a Las Vegas hotel FULL of thousands of serious league players, what does that say?

I think we have a skewed view of ourselves as well. The percentage of members here that spring for the PPV streams that are discussed and promoted on this board is pathetic.

Bring up the subject about the cost of food at the Riviera Hotel on this forum and see what happens. Of course a lot of these same people complain that their tournament should be moved to a nicer place like the Mirage or the Bellagio. Go figure.

Pool players, as a group, simply have not supported the professional game in years. At least not nearly to the extent needed to take it to a level you envision. This is a base problem. It just seems to me that if pro events were attended by thousands of fans then television and sponsors would follow.


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03-16-2010, 06:58 PM

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Our perspective here on AZB is somewhat distorted.
Exactly what I was saying. I agree 100%.

Quote:
And not just that the outside world of casual players would flock to watch a professional pool tour, which is doubtful. When a pro event of 100 of the best players in the world plays to an empty room when it is taking place in a Las Vegas hotel FULL of thousands of serious league players, what does that say?
That says it ALL.

I've been to tournaments where some of the Gods of pool were slugging it out playing some of the greatest 9-ball matches ever, at the peak of their games... and with the exception of a couple big-name matchups on the "TV" table *cough* accustats video table, the room was empty.

That is extremely discouraging. Almost seems hopeless.

To sit there, in a mostly empty event, watching what is the equivalent of the Tiger Woods of pool, or the Michael Jordan of pool...etcetera is sad.


Quote:
Pool players, as a group, simply have not supported the professional game in years. At least not nearly to the extent needed to take it to a level you envision. This is a base problem. It just seems to me that if pro events were attended by thousands of fans then television and sponsors would follow.

You're right.


Unfortunately, many have the opposite belief. I don't blame them or bash them for trying, because they are trying out of desperation. It's the only thing they can come up with in what is effectively, an unworkable situation.


Allow me to clarify.


Some believe in the "build it and they will come" theory of growing pool. I believe this is flawed and will never work.

Example 1: The IPT.

Throw tons of money at it, big prizes brings attention. Theory is that people show interest in that which has big prize money. This was proved false.

Example 2: Certain new amateur leagues.

Some people are promoting amateur leagues where a percentage is taken to subsidize a professional tour. Essentially, welfare for the pros.

The theory being, that if a pro tour can be sustained - it will generate more interest and grow the base, that base will feed back into the pros and a cycle will develop. A growth cycle.

I believe this is flawed - because it depends on a TINY base (the amateur pool leagues) to fund a tour that, as you mentioned in your own post - NO ONE GIVES A #@!& ABOUT. Not even the very players that are being taxed to subsidize said pro tour. How the heck are outsiders suppose to get into pro pool when the amateur players themselves don't care?


Your example was the best of the best. Thousands of serious (serious enough to travel to Vegas) amateur league players and most could care less about the pro event.

I could make excuses for them. They're focused on their stay there. Um, it's Vegas - when in Vegas you going to watch some pros play or go out and have a good time?

But those excuses don't hold up, because in other areas of the country, the same thing happens, yet there's no Vegas party time nor tourney for the amateurs to be occupied with.


It's truly sad, but the truth is not even most of the players even care about pro pool. Almost no one does.


"It takes a lot of grilled cheese level players to build a pyramid for the Kobe Beef players to stand on." - JB
  
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