Today NBA.com sent me an email saying happy birthday.  Out of all the sites I’ve given my information, NBA.com is probably one of the least engaging.  Unfortunately, their customer service was terrible when I called in to cancel service due to blackouts.  However, the fact that they sent me an email saying happy birthday actually impresses me.

There are tens of companies that have my personal information, but as of yet, they were the only ones to send an email.  It’s an automated thing, there’s no real human effort other than setting up the script.  But it’s a good chance to get in front of someone for an altruistic reason.  The fact that they went to the effort shows that someone is thinking about how to engage folks.

Companies like the NBA have so much going for them–a product that people are incredibly passionate about, some of the most popular athletes in the world representing their brand on a daily basis.  Aspired to by millions.  Historic.  It’s amazing to think about.  My big gripe with the NBA is not being able to watch Twolves games without buying cable.  HBO is now making their product available for $15 per month–they believe their content is good enough to warrant that, and if they keep producing stuff like Game of Thrones, I’d agree.

The NBA/NFL/NHL/MLB all have content that’s BETTER than HBO.  It’s live.  It’s near religion for some folks.  I think those companies are some of the biggest reasons why people haven’t gotten rid of cable entirely.  They really have the opportunity to build a subscription system that’s more powerful than the traditional networks now.  Hopefully they do.

Birthdays are actually a really good reason to reach out to your customers, mostly to say thanks for being a customer.  The NBA.com email gave me a 10% coupon for their store–I probably won’t use it, but I do appreciate it.