Dancing players. Senior citizen cheerleaders.

And if a fan catches a foul ball, it counts as an out.

This is not an ordinary baseball game.

The Savannah Bananas are an exhibition baseball team that creates a circus-like atmosphere with its events. One of the team’s main goals: “Entertain always.”

Jesse Cole, owner of the Savannah Bananas, says the games are always sold out because the events seek to “create raving fans.”

Cole will be the keynote speaker at next week’s NAAA World Remarketing Convention in Chicago, and he will explain how his methods of creating an entertaining experience can apply to auto auctions.

“Even if you’re a lawyer or if you’re an accountant, or whatever the business is, you can still figure out when [customers] first interact with you: Are you actually providing enjoyment, or is it the same thing everyone else does?” Cole said.

How does he advise businesses to create raving fans? He follows what he describes as the five E’s of the Bananas’ business model. One of those, again, is “Entertain always,” and one of the ways the team does that is to send fans a celebration video when they buy a ticket.

Fans also receive a playlist of music to listen to on the way to the ballpark. Once fans arrive, they will be treated to attractions such as a senior citizen cheerleading squad called the “Banana Nanas.”

“It’s a full entertainment experience,” Cole said. He would advise auctions to take a similar route in creating entertaining events, noting that many of his customers don’t even like baseball.

“How do you make [auto auctions] so entertaining that people [who] don’t want to buy a car or don’t even love cars want to watch it, want to go to it, want to engage it?” he said.

“Eliminate friction” is another of the five E’s. Noting that fees are a friction point for customers, Cole said the team will not charge ticket fees, service fees, or any other extra fees to customers.

“Our tickets at Savannah are all-inclusive. They include all your burgers, hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, soda, water, popcorn, dessert,” he said.

The other E’s: “Experiment constantly,” “Engage deeply,” and “Empower action.”

In addition to his entertaining business model, Cole’s individual story will also be of interest to the convention’s attendees. He was the general manager of the Gastonia Grizzlies collegiate summer baseball team that struggled financially. Cole came up with the idea to add entertaining attractions such as players wearing kilts, and the fun grew from there.

On that last “E,” which is “Empower action,” Cole said executives and managers can’t be the only people allowed to take action. Even though ideas might not be as wild as the Bananas’ break-dancing coach, a player on stilts or a dancing umpire, Cole believes in teamwork for all businesses.

“You have to be able to empower the whole team to create these fans-first moments and empower them to really make a difference for your fans or your customers,” he said. “That goes for any industry.”