I had promised myself that I wouldn't write more big-picture posts about soccer analytics, but I can't help myself this time.
On the drive home, I was listening to the Brian Kenny show on ESPN Radio and the substitute host John Kincaide was discussing the ongoing NFL lockout talks. Kincaide voiced his doubts that either the NFL owners or the players through their union cared about the opinion of the fans — the paying customers of the league who make much of their billion-dollar revenue possible — because not once in this whole discussion have they addressed fan issues during their negotiations. I would argue that in the narrow interest of the players' union, it's not their job to think about the fans; rather, it's their job to think about the players.
But Kincaide makes a good point that I believe presents an opportunity for sports analytics. Does any professional sports league take the time to measure the satisfaction of its customers at their events? I've never been a season-ticket holder before, so I'll pose this question to my readers: has your team ever sent you a customer satisfaction form asking you if you liked the experience of purchasing tickets or going to the games? I would be especially interested in the perspective of readers from North America and Europe; my impression is that the expectations of the fan experience at sporting events in North America is very, very different from that of the rest of the world.
Measuring fan experience isn't one of my primary areas of interest as far as soccer analytics are concerned, but I think it will become important as fans in this country and abroad become more demanding about the matchday experience (cost, safety, amenities, etc.).