Marketing & match ticketing policy


#61

This is what I do not understand about the attitude of our chairman, even if he isn’t the slightest bit interested in the club, it is in everyones interest, including his, for it to grow. There is no scenario where having 3600 home fans sat in a library-like state benefits anyone?

Quite frankly with some of what has been discovered from this thread, I am surprised as many go as they do…for 4 years I have been paying more than I had to for me and the lad because I had no idea I could pay just £2 for him. Where is the marketing?! Where is the clear online information about tickets available?

The atmosphere debate could be intrinsically linked to the exclusion of that late teenage and young adult group. Who creates most of the noise at football stadiums - young lads in groups! The only young lads we are appealing to are sat with their parent(s)!

Like someone has mentioned, the lack of new blood around the ground is a huge concern. Support is something that is built over years of marketing and our club aren’t doing any worthwhile marketing in this regard.


#62

Agree, Dan Mole gets a rough deal - works within the same financial constraints as everyone else at the club and will have no final say on pricing etc. Think he does a lot of good work and at least displays empathy for football side of operations, his efforts to get a big crowd in for the Northampton game a good example.

Regards the marketing side, the club offer entry level wages so the digital/comms team will be learning on the job, likely slogging their guts out to make the most out of a limited marketing budget. As with so many things at the club, investment is needed if we’re ever to make a real impact.


#64

Problem with reducing one-off admission costs is that the club would have to lower season tickets prices significantly to make them worthwhile, which might see the playing budget take a hit.


#65

I’ve always been reluctant to criticise the club regarding ticket prices, given the free football incentive and just an acceptance that we’ve been paying the going rate for League One football. However, once you start speaking to fans of other clubs in higher divisions who can’t quite believe the £349 early bird season ticket price, it does start to make you wonder…

Looking back at previous fans forums and Dan’s response email earlier in this thread, the club’s stance on this has always been pretty much the same and they seem content at rolling out the same answers each time this question is asked. Given though we’re currently the longest serving League One club (I think), coupled with our location, there has to be a re-think of how we’re attracting new supporters to the club.

It’s been mentioned a few times in this thread but the atmosphere at home games is shocking, and in comparison with away games it’s chalk and cheese, but the fact that we’ve always had a very vocal away support should be something that the club tries to embrace and replicate at home games. I’m positive that by changing the Homeserve lower blocks 3 & 4 to unreserved seating with discounts and designating that the ‘singing section’ (or whatever) would have a positive effect on the atmosphere and ultimately attendances. That’s because you’re actually giving people an additional reason to come to the Banks’s, rather than just mid-table League One football.

Again, the club have been very clear in the past that they are against trying to ‘force’ an atmosphere at home games and that good football results will ultimately lead to a better atmosphere, which is true to an extent but this is Walsall, we don’t and won’t be winning every week. All grounds in England and Europe have official or unofficial singing sections, whereas we seem to have a strange situation whereby there are three separate groups in one stand trying to create an atmosphere. A starter point for the club should be identifying a way to get those three groups all together as one, whether that be in the Homeserve or in a new area of the ground.

The club were applauded for developing the ‘footballing philosophy’ back in 2012, which included the free football initiative, but it’s now 6 years on and according the last Fans’ Forum only 50 or so of these tickets have been sold - it’s time to modernise again WFC…


#66

Bingo Simon, currently the season ticket sales can be forecast with almost perfect accuracy and therefore the playing budget worked out from that. Any big change to ticket prices would put the budget into a limbo scenario and create a big butterfly effect. Why change the status quo is most likely the feeling at board level. Personally I think the time is right to overhaul and give a new ticketing structure a try and see how it works out especially with the current feel good factor with local boy Keates back etc.


#67

Chris Saunders why have you used your eBay username to sign up? No business here chief :joy:


#68

Haha, how long have you had that in drafts? I vaguely remember telling you that fact but I’d completely forgotten you were going to put me on here :rofl:


#69

I agree there is a bit of a feel good atmosphere but the feel bad atmosphere from Jan of last season has cost us I would think about 400 ST holders. The majority of these lapses are clearly are not walking up on a Saturday. We are now having to think about ways of attracting teenagers etc to make up the difference.


#70

You have to remember that JB is a small businessman like many in our town. There is no vision or leadership because those sort of people are few and far between. He is simply typical of the town itself. Many years ago I had a conversation with a high level incomer to our town and he had an interesting theory that Walsall’s problems were caused by the fact that all its leaders came from small business…the Tories were the owners…the socialists were TU representatives at those firms!. It goes back a long way as some of you may know we lost out in the 1880s because the Council would not have the main railway line through the town because of the effect it would have on horsepower and the consequences for the leather industry.
Sorry for the history lesson but what am really saying is the club needs new ownership with a real vision for where the Club could go although where we find that person or persons from is another matter. In the meantime all we can do through threads such as this is draw matters to the attention of the Club and hope someone understands what we are saying.


#71

More questions than answers from me on this issue. In respect of the potential detrimental effect of ticket price changes on the playing budget. I can see that possibility, but we already have one of the lowest playing budgets in the league, and with support clearly dwindling over the last few years one can only assume that sticking with the current ticketing model will GUARANTEE a negative effect, that’s if you accept that admission income has an impact. I was under the impression that with all of our extra-football related income the admission income was but a fraction of the business income as a whole. QED, compared to other clubs of a similar size in this league we should be best placed to experiment with ticketing incentives?? (note question marks!).

Forget clubs with much larger support bases, or mega-rich owners. Again maybe I’m being ignorant of the facts of these other clubs, but by comparison…

Wycombe Main stand £17 adults, under 26!!! £13, under 19s £6, under 13’s FREE.
Terrace (yes I know we havn’t got one anymore) Adults £16, under 26 £12, under 19 £6.

Shrewsbury Students and under 22’s £15-17, Under 19 £8-12, under 12 £ 6-10.

Scunthorpe U21 £13-15 u18 £9-11, u16 £6-7.

Gillingham u18 £6-7

Rochdale u17 £5, u22 £12-£16.

Just a few examples from our league.


#72

As I have mentioned before I think the clubs decision not to offer a student or young person’s discount is a really counterproductive decision. As previously mentioned, aren’t young lads, 18,19,20,21 the real future of the fan base? Encouraging groups of young lads through an attractive ticket price and a good atmosphere will secure and entrench the future fan base.

A further gripe is the clubs lack of contact in terms of season ticket retention. I stopped having a season ticket when I first moved to University (4 years ago) yet I haven’t ever received a phone call or email asking me why I haven’t renewed - the club are missing a trick. Surely as a business, if a previous customer stops buying the product you want to know why?


#73

Any volunteers to print this and post to the club? Not sure their online skills aren’t up to finding this thread…


#74

I saw it all this season when collecting my tickets - I have mentioned it previously. A young lad (no older than 20-21) couldn’t buy a family ticket for him and his younger brother. He had to stump up a full adult and full child price. Doubt he’s been back since - especially as it was the Doncaster game.

Club need to take a long hard look at themselves. I have friends who would tag along more often if it were to be cheaper - but they are unwilling to pay over £20 to watch.


#75

Thank you for putting this on , and wording it so much better than i would
I’ve been thinking at work all afternoon when i get in i’m going to put a piece together regarding the club assisting us supporter’s who want to get together and vocally support our team , and make some area’s public knowledge i.e as you rightly stated beginning with the lower 3&4 for instance will be available for like minded Fan’s , and hopefully this area will grow as other people feel more at ease being more vocal with other supporter’s doing the same rather than have someone looking down their nose at him for being in the wrong place /area
I’m old school and still remember the great atmosphere we used to generate at Fellows Park the old street ender’s , now that was how we could and still should get behind our team , and the club should encourage that support , and assist the people who want to replicate that


#76

Fairly sure the issue of a singing section was brought up a few years ago and the club declined to get involved. Some lads tried to unofficially start a singing section in the F2G Upper. Shame Mole deleted his twitter account as a lot of the discussion was on there


#77

Found a link: https://walsall.vitalfootball.co.uk/upper-the-saddlers-campaign/

Walsall FC’s response?? :

Walsall CEO Stefan Gamble replied to an email stating that whilst he applauded the fans for their ideas, he was worried that the idea would ruin match day experiences for fans already situated in the upper tier.


#78

Deep down they really do know why , and basically don’t seem to give a ■■■■


#79

I sent the club a link to the discussion yesterday and again today as a range of excellent points have been raised. Mole said the ticketing manager was going to collate the findings and present to the board.

We have done most of their work for them!! Just hope they take it on board. Why has all this been initated by the fans and not those paid to enhance and improve the fan experience and club profits?


#80

Surely the Board can work out by reducing the cost to get in to watch the game’s more bum’s on seat’s will duly follow , hence more revenue from catering i.e drink’s and food sale’s , program’s , club shop etc etc they just aren’t willing to take a gamble as our Chairman i believe is quite happy skimming off the top what’s already available and guaranteed


#81

I have suggested to the club a working party be established between fans and the club and then a public consultation to take place. I’ll see how quickly they tell me to ■■■■ off