Controversy over Everton’s Allardyce shows why fan surveys don’t work

Plenty of people spat out their tea this morning after reading that Everton have sent out a survey to their supporters, part of which is to rate the manager, Sam Allardyce. Allardyce has plenty of critics, but that’s not the point. For someone like me interested in Fan Engagment, trying to understand the thinking ofContinue reading “Controversy over Everton’s Allardyce shows why fan surveys don’t work”

Buyer beware! How to solve the crisis at Sunderland (and other clubs besides)

Sunderland is all at sea. I don’t need to add to the reams of writing about Ellis Short and the demise of his interest in the club. It’s a sad sight for any team to be bottom of a division largely on the basis, it seems to me, that it’s all gone bad behind theContinue reading “Buyer beware! How to solve the crisis at Sunderland (and other clubs besides)”

Arsenal & West Ham: Do the fans always know first?

NB: This article was edited on 06/09/2017 Or perhaps it should say, ‘Do the fans always know best?’ I’ve been prompted to write this article by two interesting stories and posts that I’ve seen recently. The first, about the protests being organised by West Ham supporters; and the second, a story from the Arsenal SupportersContinue reading “Arsenal & West Ham: Do the fans always know first?”

Nottingham Forest – can they really become ‘the model club’ for fans?

Incoming owner of Forest, the Greek businessman Evangelos M. Marinakis, has proclaimed his vision of a the club becoming ‘the model club in England for fan and community participation’. It’s certainly a significant step-change from the previous owner, Fawaz Al Hasawi. The announcement says: ‘Because Nottingham and the region are home to excellent universities, fanContinue reading “Nottingham Forest – can they really become ‘the model club’ for fans?”

Spirit of Shankly releases its report on supporter engagement

  The following story has just been published on the Spirit of Shankly website. As the report’s author, I now reproduce it here. You can download a copy of the report via this link. Following Liverpool Football Club’s (LFC) announcement yesterday about their ‘new supporter liaison and engagement process’ – the result of an independentContinue reading “Spirit of Shankly releases its report on supporter engagement”

The state of ‘Supporter Engagement’ in English football

I’ve been doing a lot of work lately on supporters as ‘stakeholders’. Alongside terms like ‘engagement’, ‘dialogue’ and ‘structured relationships’ it’s become a term that is used a lot, and sadly, abused. I’ve done some recent work on this area for the Liverpool supporters’ trust Spirit of Shankly (more on that soon), but what reallyContinue reading “The state of ‘Supporter Engagement’ in English football”

Recycled vox-pops: Back to the Future with Fan TV

We’re witnessing a gear-shift in how fans are seen, and heard. Something has arrived that finally gives fans a voice at their clubs, that gives them the right to be heard, and the tools to do it. Apparently, that’s ‘Fan TV’. Particularly, Arsenal Fan TV, whose founder declares little short of a revolution in theContinue reading “Recycled vox-pops: Back to the Future with Fan TV”

Where do fans fit?

I’m looking at communications practice at English football clubs as part of my CIPR PR Diploma personal project. Specifically, I’m looking at whether we see much two-way ‘symmetrical’ communications (where both sides are prepared to change their positions as a result of the relationship and conversations attached to it), why clubs (and sometimes fans too) areContinue reading “Where do fans fit?”

Brighton & Hove Albion’s visible man: Paul Barber

I’ve just spent 45 mins-or-so in the company of Brighton and Hove Albion Chief Executive, Paul Barber, who I was interviewing for the ‘personal project’ that brings my Diploma in Public Relations to a close. I’m also interviewing supporters’ representatives, journalists, officials and other CEOs. The subject I’m looking at concerns two-way communications between English football clubs and their ‘stakeholders’Continue reading “Brighton & Hove Albion’s visible man: Paul Barber”