Engaging 100,000 rugby fans with real-time updates

European Rugby Finals

When 100,000 rugby fans flocked to Newcastle, they were given a warm North East welcome, courtesy of a Shout-built mobile experience.

Wayfinding & map integration

Visitor engagement

Real-time promotional opportunities


Having met the ambitious aims of the city for the Great Exhibition visitor app, the Shout team were a natural choice to explore mobile fan experience enhancement for the Newcastle European Rugby Finals.

Organisers wanted fans to feel a spirit of welcome from the moment they arrived in their host city and to receive key match information at just the right time.

They aimed to drive footfall into the fan village and reach visitors with targeted, timely marketing messages.

The Challenge

The event organisers needed a visitor app to support and add value to the fan experience during the weekend of the Newcastle European Rugby Finals, while giving fans key information about what to do when the matches were on.

Organisers wanted visitors to be given useful information about the city, including recommendations for sightseeing, places to eat and things to do.

This promotional material needed to be combined with practical and proactive event information to engage the fans in the weekend’s sporting events, including:

  • Directions to St James’ Park Stadium
  • Stadium map with entry gates, food and drink concessions
  • Travel time guidance
  • Security information about St James’ Park
  • A programme of fan village activity
  • Special offers from partner businesses
  • Travel, traffic and transport updates
  • Emergency services contact details

The Solution

Our focus at all times during the app development was on contributing to and enhancing the fan experience. We carried out in-depth user experience research to ensure that we met the needs of the visiting fans and surfaced the information they needed intuitively.

The collaborative UX process involved the development of prototypes, visuals, and wireframing alongside client discussions and rigorous testing by our analysts.

The experience we developed needed to:

  • Be simple to use
  • Provide simple wayfinding utilising Google Maps
  • Deliver both pre-scheduled and real-time push notifications
  • Be optimised, so battery and data plans wouldn’t be compromised by the use of GPS

The app build used our existing Canopy platform, which triggers useful and engaging information to audiences at designated points and via users’ locations.

From the point of their arrival at Newcastle Central Station, our app guided fans to St. James’ Park – and other points of interest across the city – using GPS.

This wayfinding element helped people to explore the fan village and provided all the information needed to ensure visitors had a positive experience of the European Rugby Finals in Newcastle.

"I cannot recommend Shout highly enough. They are innovative, can-do and they deliver.”
Head of Business Development
NUFC, European Rugby hosts

The Outcome

Delivered to market in less than two months, the app was in-store ready to greet the 100,000+ fans who flocked to Newcastle for a memorable weekend of Rugby.  

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