Team Marketing Ruminations—MLS FCI now available

Tidbits, Thoughts & Tips around sports business…

News, notes and nuggets from our Publisher

Hello Fancentric Friends:

Still basking in the glow of the publication of the 2022 NFL Fan Cost Index®, we nevertheless present the 2022 MLS Fan Cost Index®!

Next up: 2022-23 NBA and NHL FCIs.

Topline MLS FCI takeaways

The latest exclusive Team Marketing Report Fan Cost Index® data finds that 2022’s inflationary market that the Federal Reserve has battled all year has definitely impacted the cost of attending Major League Soccer games over the recently completed 2022 campaign.

The average general ticket to a 2022 MLS match cost $38.95, a $3.09 increase from 2021, with the 27 non-expansion clubs posting an average ticket price gain of 7.2 percent year-over-year.

Adding in gameday expenses—four weighted average non-premium tickets combined with the lowest stadium pricing for four sodas, four hot dogs, two beers and two souvenirs (team scarves for MLS), along with a nearby parking spot—the average MLS FCI® increased $23.68 to $300.72, an average increase of 7.6 percent.

Newly minted MLS Cup winners Los Angeles FC also stake claim to the highest team FCI crown at $395.46 (up 10.5% from 2021). Fans of FC Dallas have never drank from the MLS Cup, however, they can boast that they are the most affordable MLS team thanks to the lowest average ticket price by far ($22.86) with their FCI of $201.44 (up 1.6%).

Across the league, 21 clubs increased ticket prices from 2021, while three were flat and three were down.

Looking at team FCIs, 24 teams had higher FCIs compared to 2021, one was flat and two posted lower FCIs.

Head here to read TMR’s insights and view where every team landed in the latest MLS FCI table.

Reading is fundamental

A few recent sports business articles of note, plus a musical bonus, all worth a read:

The Wall Street Journal‘s Miriam Gottfried on Michael Rubin’s continued growth of Fanatics: “Fanatics Hits $31 Billion Valuation in Latest Funding Round”

ForbesToni Fitzgerald on remarkable viewership gains in women’s sports on television: “The Fastest-Growing Audiences On TV Are For Women’s Sports”

Sportico’s John WallStreet (Corey Leff) explains that in our new “crypto winter,” we can look for generative AI to fill the sponsorship dollar gap: “Generative AI could become sports’ ‘next big sponsorship vertical'”

The Athletic‘s Daniel Kaplan on struggles for debt-laden RSN operator Diamond Sports: “Bally Sports reports subscriber losses, lower cash flow as RSN model teeters”

Forbes SportsMoney‘s Jabari Young on “the economic ramifications of the [Watson] contract that threaten to change how the league operates”: “Inside The NFL’s Fight Over Fully Guaranteed Player Contracts Like Deshaun Watson’s”

And a fun one to argue with friends and co-workers over: “The Athletic’s greatest songs played in sports arenas: A 50-year musical trek.” Sadly the best of the best, Steam’s Kiss Him Goodbye, was released in 1969 and therefore ineligible for this list. That said, nothing beats belting this one out with Nancy Faust tickling the ivories on the old Comiskey Park organ circa the late 70’s and early 80’s.

Have a great week and, as always, stay fancentric friends!


Header photo: @LAFC

Chris brings deep sports business experience to his role as publisher of TMR. He first put his sales, experiential marketing, PR, sales and valuation skills to work in sporting goods retail in 1986. He has since worked for brands and agencies across all major league sports, plus golf, college athletics, marathons and motorsports. Chris is also the proud founder of Painless Networking.