Thankfully, the Bundesliga isn’t one of them, and the decision makers at the highest level of German football are showing a great thirst for such knowledge. Indeed, they are consistently on the lookout on how to provide a better experience for their consumer base.
One of the key strategies in fan engagement for the Bundesliga is to help improve and build the league’s brand and reach. This is done by providing more insights on the players that make it the highest scoring amongst the top European leagues.
Artificial intelligence (AI) technology has allowed better delivery of information. The advancements in the same have ensured that the Bundesliga can create deeper fan engagement, whether through the league’s owned and operated channels or via enhanced player profiles.
Every Bundesliga player now has an online profile on the league’s website and app. There is minimal human administration required when inputting key career stats, recent matches and even personal information such as their nationality, birthday and age. This information is available instantly and updated immediately as required – for example when a player makes another appearance or scores a goal.
Improved user experience
The profiles are generated via machine learning and created by a Natural Language Processing (NLP) engine. Given the vast amount of information to be updated; 18 teams, each with a matchday squad of 18 players, for a total of 324 profiles, AI executes the task much quicker than a human data inputter, thereby dramatically improving efficiency and, as a result, the user experience.
The German Football League (DFL), which runs the Bundesliga, have collaborated with Sportec Solutions (STS), Retresco, the agency responsible for the NLP engine, Deltatre, which provides the data feeds and DFL Digital Sports, on the project.
“AI is the underlying basic technology that will enable and further improve all capabilities in the future, and it is front and centre of our approach to developing quality content for our partners and fans. The application of new technologies will allow our team to focus even more on creating the compelling stories which demonstrate the key assets of our football league, including the wonderful personal achievements of individual players,” said DFL Group executive vice president, digital innovations, Andreas Heyden.
The Bundesliga is conscious of the need to constantly upgrade and improve technologies. In order to remain an industry leader in this area, further expansion is planned, with profiles in the pipeline for every Bundesliga 2 player in the future.