- The Los Angeles Rams unveiled a new digital hub for engaging fans, stakeholders and corporate brand partners, per a news release.
- The Virtual Rams House was developed with event technology company 6Connex and claims to be the first virtual venue in the sports industry. Open year-round, the space will host the team's inaugural End of Season Summit where executives will discuss the prior season — which saw the Rams clinch a Super Bowl victory — offseason plans and expectations for the rest of 2022. Registration is available via a web portal.
- The platform will also feature gameday chats and discussion boards to bring fans closer together and spark debate. Season ticket holders will be able to reach out to other members in their section of SoFi Stadium to foster a sense of community. The concept aligns with aspects of the metaverse, where the real and digital worlds are brought together to create a more immersive experience for consumers.
Fresh off a victory at Super Bowl LVI, the Rams are looking to level up their fan engagement strategy with the Virtual Rams House. The team returned to LA in 2016 after decades in St. Louis but has faced challenges in growing a loyal following in a city that has no shortage of established sports franchises. A big game win could help change that perception, while consumers have expressed greater receptivity to hybrid and virtual events during the pandemic. Community-building was emphasized in the announcement, and the Virtual Rams House offers a number of chat and networking features for diehards.
The Virtual Rams House also serves as a space for brands to experiment. No marketing activations were detailed in the announcement, but companies have flocked to tie-ins related to the metaverse as they try to appear on the leading edge of digital technology. The release noted that Rams corporate partners will be able to "leverage the Virtual Rams House to engage Rams fans in unique ways."
The Virtual Rams House is the product of a larger deal between 6Connex and the team. In 2021, the two inked a five-year tie-up that provides the event technology firm branding and signage at SoFi Stadium during Rams home games, along with sponsorship of a content series that will be released throughout the year.
Teams and sports marketers have tested the waters with more virtual experiences as some consumers remain wary of in-person gatherings. Online venues also provide the benefit of always-on functionality. The Virtual Rams House will operate year-round, but also run content related to specific tentpole events for the NFL and community-focused gatherings.