• Loading stock data...
Thursday, February 29, 2024

Chiefs Turn to AR to Deliver New Fan Experiences

This isn’t your normal ticket giveaway.

The partnership is the first AR experiment for the Chiefs. (Photo via the Chiefs)

While the Kansas City Chiefs are off to a 5–2 record on the field, off it, their digital media department is opening the door for entirely new fan experiences through the use of augmented reality.

In partnership with YinzCam and Coke, the Chiefs created an opportunity for fans to purchase select Coke cans from local retailers, scan the can on their mobile app, and find special codes inside the augmented reality experience created by scanning the can.

Fans can then input those codes on Chiefs Kingdom Rewards and be entered to win a trip to Dallas to watch the Chiefs take on the Cowboys, gift cards or even rewards points.

In what was a first for the Chiefs when it comes to AR campaigns, James Royer, Director of Digital Media & Strategy, believes that it is just the beginning for his team.

“My favorite part is being able to get out front of where we see the industry going. What is exciting to me is getting that first one under our belt and being able to satisfy three different business objectives. Not just doing it to do it. This is a launch pad for future executions.”

Not only has the execution been well received by fans and constituents, the strategy behind the campaign made it easy for the Chiefs’ executives to buy into the idea that Royer and his team presented.

“The tricky part to us from a business perspective was really trying to accomplish three different things:

  1. Playing up our partnership with Coke, who is our longest standing partner.
  2. Giving us the opportunity to drive usage of our mobile app.
  3. Engaging our fan loyalty program as well.

The fact that we could touch three different business objectives in one campaign was something that definitely appealed to all parties involved.”

Royer also credited Chiefs’ leadership for being actively engaged in what trends are happening in the industry to the success of the campaign.

“I think it starts with our Chairman, Clark Hunt. He is up to speed when it comes to virtual reality and augmented reality, and when we presented the idea it was very quick to be approved.”

In order to pull the campaign off, the Chiefs turned to Coke, their longest tenured partner and to YinzCam, a mobile app and software developer based out of Pittsburgh, who has helped develop AR activations for other teams in the NFL, as well as NBA and MLS.

A look at the cans in which fans can purchase to unlock the AR experiences. (Image via the Chiefs)

For YinzCam, partnering with the Chiefs meant having the opportunity to try something creative and new.

“In the Chiefs’ case, the one thing I really liked is that when you twirl the Coke can in your hand, it effectively makes the video rewind and fast forward,” said Priya Narasimhan, Founder and CEO of YinzCam. “That was a really cool effect. You are not expecting that manipulating an object in the real world can cause a digital artifact to change the way it operates.”

While all the parties involved have benefitted, creating a great experience for the fans was the number one priority.

“I think fans are really enjoying it,” said Royer. “We have seen a lot of intrigue in the contest. For the contest you have to find five or six videos and we are seeing that fans are trying to do just that. The usage numbers are consistent. Fans are consistently coming back to it and experiencing it.”

For the Chiefs, that is exactly what they wanted to have happen and part of the reason they kept the experience in the app.

“I think that was the key transition for us, we wanted to do an augmented reality campaign that wasn’t a one-hit-wonder. We wanted something that fans had to constantly check and tell their friends about it. We didn’t install social sharing capabilities, because we wanted to keep that surprise and delight factor. To keep it engaging in a long-term pace, we wanted to make sure that fans had to come in and experience it themselves.”

With Apple unveiling AR kits in the iPhone8 and iPhoneX, and more and more companies putting money into these experiences, the surface has just been scratched when it comes to the influence of AR in sports.

If this is just the beginning, we are in for a fun ride.

This piece has been presented to you by SMU’s Master of Science in Sport Management.

Front Office Sports is a leading multi-platform publication and industry resource that covers the intersection of business and sports.

Want to learn more, or have a story featured about you or your organization? Contact us today.

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott throws a pass during the first half against the Seattle Seahawks at AT&T Stadium.

Amazon Bounces Back With Record Viewership

The Dallas Cowboys’ win over the Seattle Seahawks averaged 15.26 million viewers.
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts tosses the ball to fans after scoring a touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the first quarter at Lincoln Financial Field.

The Philadelphia Eagles Continue To Be NFL’s Biggest Draw

Philadelphia was once again in one of the NFL’s most-watched games.
Green Bay Packers tight end Tucker Kraft celebrates a touchdown against the Detroit Lions during the first half at Ford Field in Detroit on Thursday, Nov. 23, 2023.

Football Dominates Thanksgiving, With A Side Of Basketball

Fox earned its highest viewership for college basketball ever.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

MLB’s Media Mess


Featured Today

Oct 5, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Bob Kendrick, president of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, points to the lettering outside of the museum Tuesday.

How Do You Keep Negro Leagues Baseball History Alive? Put It in a Video Game

Negro Leagues Baseball Museum attracting increased donations, visits from ‘MLB The Show.’
February 26, 2024

The Victor Wembanyama Rookie Card Market Hasn’t Matched His Hype

A cooling market and Fanatics autograph deal leaves big-money collectors waiting.
February 25, 2024

Sham Gods: The Rapidly Growing World of Sports Impersonators on X

Fake Schefters and Wojs, fabricated trade demands, and borrowed profile pictures.
Sep 24, 2023; Oakland, California, USA; A general view of the Oakland Athletics dugout after the game against the Detroit Tigers at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.
February 24, 2024

Murky Future: Everything You Need to Know About the A’s Move to Las Vegas

Breaking down one of the most drawn-out, multifaceted sagas in sports.


Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Multiple - USA Careers
Multiple - USA Careers
Multiple - USA Careers
The Adidas ball has changed over the years.

The Most Advanced Tech at the Women’s World Cup Might Surprise You

This year’s OCEAUNZ introduces connected ball technology to the women’s game.

Creating Fan-Centric Content With AI

WSC’s highlight automation improved the speed of ESPN’s content creation.

Rewriting the Sports Media Playbook

WSC’s highlight automation improved Clemson’s content strategy and overall growth.

How LivePass is Redefining Ticketing for the Next Generation of Fans

The next wave of ticketing technology.

Re-Imagining Storytelling With AI

Amy Anderson, Head of Content Strategy at NASCAR Studios, discusses the role of AI technology in developing and growing new content.
Arial view of Audi testing track
December 4, 2022

Audi Gears Up for F1 with Major New Facility

Audi is building a 10,000 square-foot building to support its F1 efforts.
Woman wears Meta Quest headset while working out to have virtual reality exercise session
November 22, 2022

Meta’s Plans for VR Fitness Could Hit Snag

A government agency is looking to block an acquisition by Meta.
Nike phone advertisement
November 15, 2022

Nike Jumps Further into Metaverse With Virtual Sneaker Platform

The world’s largest sportswear company is taking its talents to the metaverse.