Chew On This: Mets Lunch Growing As A Property…

How do the NBA Finals and the Amazins’ ties together? How about through Mets Lunch, a daily mobile-first delivery of Mets info edited by longtime NBA senior staffer now digital entrepreneur Terry Lyons.

Now in its second year, Mets Lunch delivers little tidbits and story links for all things good and bad in Flushing. The owners also gave Sox Lunch for all those in New England (they are Boston based) and are looking to expand. We caught up with Lyons on the how and why…

NYSD: What makes Mets Lunch appealing to a casual fan?
Terry Lyons: Mets Lunch is just what a casual New York Mets fan needs to stay informed and follow the Mets all season long. It’s a newsletter that is delivered straight to your inbox at Noon each day and it provides a snapshot of results, the score, the hero or the reason the Mets lost. Then, it covers tonight’s game, who is pitching, and the same for the next game. We also live tweet each game so you can follow along on the second screen. That’s fun because we get a real pulse on what the fans are saying every night. All a fan has to do is sign-up on our page.

NYSD: How important is the mobile space to engage the fan on the go?
TL: Our venture is geared 100% for mobile. Our goal is to give every single Mets fan two-screens of “no nonsense,” “no-noise,” “no pop-ups,” and “no distractions” information. Aside from the basics I mentioned above, there are always three or four good story links and one or two video highlight links to the official MLBAM offerings. A smart fan can use Mets Lunch as a time saver to find the best information, already vetted and queued-up.

NYSD: You have successfully grown Sox Lunch in Boston, why Mets Lunch in this crowded marketplace?
TL: Yes, Sox Lunch is the “grand-daddy” of them all and we decided to venture out to do the Mets and the Cubs. When we looked at all the stats and analytics, there were a number of baseball teams that made sense, but the Mets and the Cubs have tremendous fan followings and they are passionate. Going forward, with the proper backing or a strategic alignment with the right company, we’re hoping to expand. I’d love to have a cross-town rivalry “Lunch” and there’s a solid plan to expand.

NYSD: What has been the response from fans thus far?
TL: The response has been terrific. I’m lucky in the fact that my cohorts at Sox Lunch learned a lot over the past few years and gave me a pretty strong blue print. But, the thing I’ve always loved about sports and – it rings true for the Mets – every team is different. In N.Y., it’s no nonsense. Get me the facts! I’m busy!

One of the things I enjoy most is live tweeting during games. Sometimes you can send in some commentary, a factoid or a simple observation. Sometimes, I enjoy making a few wise-cracks and they get re-tweeted and maybe even some LOLs, but mostly, the Live tweeting during the games is done with “good people,” keeping “good company” to watch the game alongside and it’s just plain fun. It’s a conversation with the fans. And, we see a fair share of sign-ups coming from that source. The other very encouraging thing is we’ve had a warm welcome from Foley’s NY (Restaurant on E. 33rd St, known for its strong sports and Mets followings) and they want to help us do some promotions and fan meet-ups, so more to come on that in July-August-September, for sure.

NYSD: Is this just for baseball, or can it work elsewhere or in other sports?
TL: It can work with anything, so it’s not just baseball. We have some pretty high hopes for this concept and we have the data to prove it. It will play out in Baseball first, I believe. But, quite frankly, we can adjust and tailor our technology and mobile know-how and analytics team, headed-up by Kevin Phelan, the founder of the venture, to delve into anything. Sports is our sweet-spot, and it’s perfect for any NBA, NHL, MLS or NFL team. I’m very bullish on Golf, too, even if it’s for an individual tour player and his social media strategy. In that case, a presenting sponsor can easily be inserted. Futbol/Soccer as well. I can also see it for a Rock Band touring. That’d be a blast. Sign me up for U2 Lunch!

NYSD: Where do you think this business can be next year at this time, and do the Mets have to do well for it to work?
TL: I think it always helps interest and engagement when a team is winning, no question. But, for the Mets, Sox and Cubs, you’re talking about really loyal fans who follow the team, invest a fair amount of time and really feel a part of the team every game all season long. I know that’s the way I feel. On the business side, we’ve put in a lot of hard work in setting up the system and the mechanics, we’ve done all the research and now, we’re out talking to a number of parties that have shown interest in the concept. The Sox, Mets and Cubs Lunch are here to stay, but to grow exponentially over the next year. We will require some backing, and we truly believe we have a valuable content and analytics property here. This summer is the key time.

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