You wouldn’t be much of a sports fan if you didn’t have a bucket list of events you want to see in person before you, well, kick the bucket, as it were. While plenty of people talk about such a list, few of us write it down, and even fewer of us set out to actually accomplish it. And that makes David Carter unique. Carter is a national authority on sports business and strategic marketing, and the author of four books about the sport business industry. He founded the Sports Business Group in 1999 following more than 10 years of consulting for the sports and entertainment industries, and he’s an adjunct professor of management and organization at the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business with an emphasis on sports.
But perhaps of even greater interest, Carter has set out with his best friend to tackle their own bucket list of sports events — 25 events before they turn 75 years old. Carter is serious about the endeavor as well. He’s put his list to a spreadsheet, with ground rules about what events he’d like to see and where. No country can be visited twice. No sport should be watched twice. These are just some of the ground rules. But the effort also comes with considerable planning and more than a few lessons about why you should put some thought into planning your own list should you try to tackle it. In this conversation, SportsTravel Executive Editor and Publisher Jason Gewirtz talks with Carter about what he’s learned some nine events into his own list of 25 events and what observations he has about today’s hottest issues and trends in sports events.
Among the topics discussed in this episode:
- Background on Carter’s past involvement in sports (3:23)
- How the bucket list project began (5:02)
- How he came up with his list of 25 events (7:09)
- How many events he’s finished so far and what’s next (10:39)
- Which specific events he has on his list (11:07)
- How they are funding the endeavor (13:16)
- What events are still left on the list (16:54)
- Anything that has been wildly off from his expectations going into an event (21:24)
- Any advice for those who want to tackle their own bucket lists (24:24)
- The notion of how to approach social media with the events you pursue (26:51)
- Trends he is watching in the next year in the sports events industry (28:39)
- The importance of adding an experience to an event beyond just attendance (30:52)
- Advice for those looking to enter the sports-events industry (32:00)