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Australian Rugby Union: Tackling the competition with a digital engagement strategy

Accenture's digital strategists addressed the issues of engaging fans, driving participation and capturing opportunities from digital content and channels.


As a sport, rugby competes in one of the most challenging markets in the world, striving with other major sports for the hearts and minds of stakeholders and supporters, as well as fighting for marketplace visibility, greater revenue share and new ways of interacting with fans.

The ARU looked to technology to deal with these challenges. With more than 600,000 national participants in Australia, the organisation saw the potential to engage supporters by harnessing the power of customer relationship management (CRM) to bring them closer to the action.


Working collaboratively with the ARU, Accenture mobilised a team of digital strategists to address the issues of engaging fans, driving participation and capturing opportunities from digital content and channels.

The Accenture team was able to efficiently profile capabilities and prioritise strategic imperatives needed for customer lifecycle management. They were also able to develop highly customised frameworks to help the ARU drive audience communications which revolved around a fan contact approach and segmenting user intents and interactions. These ranged from activities such as seeking information and becoming involved in community activities, through to purchasing tickets and merchandise or renewing memberships, and were important in understanding how to interact with users across different channels.


Alongside the development of a two-year fan acquisition, engagement and retention plan, Accenture also identified revenue opportunities through the new strategy.

Additionally, the nature of working closely with senior stakeholders at the ARU allowed the creation of suitable sales and service processes within the organisation, contributing to the successful adoption of the identified strategic and marketing tactics needed to enhance communication with different rugby audiences.

Through increases in CRM and marketing productivity, the organisation has experienced large successes in achieving its vision to connect more closely with fans and to develop its market share in the Australian sporting sector.