Australian Rules Football, or Aussie Rules, is hands down the number one sport in Australia, but the majority of the United States of America has never even heard of it. In an effort to change that, a group of people founded the United States Australian Football League (USAFL) in 1997. As of April of 2007, the USAFL had more than 35 teams and nearly 2,000 players across the nation. Although that was a decent amount of growth for the sport, the board members of the USAFL came up with their goals for the next 10 years. Those goals included expanding the league to 10,000 participants, to have one percent of the U.S. population become aware and interested in the sport, and to secure four new league sponsors. USAFL director of development A.J. Hudson was put in charge of coming up with a plan to achieve these goals. The main issue Hudson is going face with this task is the very limited budget he has to work with, however it is possible and in more than one way.
There are several ways to raise awareness and interest in Aussie Rules. One way by doing so, is to market to the desired audience to gain their attention and interest in the sport. By doing this, more people will hopefully show some sort of interest towards Aussie Rules. Marketing will gain new sport fans and will eventually lead to a larger fan base. Another way to increase awareness and interest is to promote the team via social media. Millions of people are on all types of social media and it is becoming a part of everyday life. By promoting the team, many people will turn their attention to Aussie, which can lead to a domino effect because whoever saw the promotion could tell their friends and family about it, and they can tell people they know about it, and so on....
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As you can see, Hudson’s task is not impossible. In fact, it is very possible. With social media as a cheap and easy marketing platform, fans are easier to reach now more than ever. By placing teams in college towns and at universities across the U.S., the USAFL can expose itself to a lot more people who would be more willing to play and watch the sport. By choosing large cities and college towns as target markets, Hudson will be exposing the USAFL to many more people that would be more willing to look into the sport or even begin watching it. Also, by showing games in restaurants Hudson would be able to attract even more people than before due to the fact that many people watch the TVs while waiting for their food. So all in all, expanding the USAFL is not as daunting of a task as one would have thought and there are several ways to do it with a low budget.
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