The Commonwealth Bank Day/Night Test Match at the GABBA was a focus event and market for Cricket Australia during the 2016/17 International Cricket Season. It was identified by Cricket Australia that attendance at, and interest in the GABBA Test Match outside England and Indian fixtures had plateaued and risked further decline unless a strategy with specific activity to address fan engagement in the event was developed to help reverse the trend.
The problem had been identified and Cricket Australia sought assistance from its Fan Marketing, PR and Activation partner TLA to create and implement a strategy for the GABBA Test that would:
Working closely with CA, Stadiums Queensland (the GABBA) and the Queensland Government, TLA developed a plan that set out to achieve all of these objectives. The insights that guided TLA’s strategy were based on a combination of Fan Activation experience and some generalisations about the Queensland market:
The concept TLA and CA developed in consideration of these insights and the strategic objectives was The Pool Deck at the Gabba. A custom structure occupying three seating bays. The Pool Deck provided fans with the chance to experience Cricket in a truly unique way with not only shaded seating decks but a 10m x 8m pool to cool off in the hot Brisbane summer weather – officially the best seats in the house!
The Pool Deck was launched via a media event at the Streets Beach in Brisbane by our appointed Pool Deck Ambassador Stephanie Rice. Steph introduced this exciting new concept to the media and the general public encouraging them to purchase a ticket to the Brisbane Test Match for their chance to go for a Swim at the Gabba Test! This announcement was supported by a variety of tactics on social media, strong PR coverage and a radio partnership with Triple M to increase exposure of the Pool Deck and encourage fans to purchase a ticket to be a part of it.