This season has seen the introduction of several levels of club memberships, which the Trust welcomes. By tailoring membership packages to different supporter needs, fans can feel that the club is catering to those needs, increasing fan engagement with the club. The Trust encourages the club to further develop the membership schemes in seasons to come.
However, there have been some teething issues with the new memberships. A number of concerns have been raised by supporters; in response to these the Trust has been in contact with the club to relay these issues. In light of the recent positive actions taken by the club following other concerns being relayed, e.g. through the Trust kiosks, we hope that the club will again act to ensure that supporters feel that they are valued and listened to.
Issues raised include:
- the delivery of membership packages, where some supporters were not completely aware of their need to collect their packages, and others did not receive theirs until very close to the start of the season or were required to collect them having expected to have their package delivered.
- the ticketing priority for away games, where it appears that not all season ticket holders (Green and Green + members) will have the same level of priority. As season ticket holders these members are the core customers of Plymouth Argyle and as such have always been given priority in terms of away tickets. The Trust would like to see the all supporters who have made this level of commitment be treated equally in terms of priority tickets, so that all season ticket holders are able to have first access to away tickets, and not just those who chose to purchase a membership which included a shirt and programmes.
- collection of match-day programmes by Green + members, who have only recently been informed of how to collect their programmes, which isn’t in the most convenient way for all. The Trust would like to see the club introduce a voucher system to enable Green + members to collect their match day programme from their most convenient programme seller.
- the “free” month of Argyle Player. Supporters were expecting a free trial month rather than having to commit to a 12 month sign up for the price of 11 months. It would be great if the club were able to offer a free month to those members who thought that this was what they would be getting.
- students who have recently benefited from the reduction in match-day ticket prices from £20 to £15 when bought in advance may have already bought a casual white membership package, e.g. £100 for six tickets that would now only cost £90. We would encourage the club to offer some form of goodwill reimbursement to such fans.
The Trust would like to emphasise that it believes the new membership schemes are an excellent means to increase fan engagement with the club and as such thus very welcome, but would encourage the club to ensure the supporter concerns with the memberships are addressed quickly and positively. When fans are supporting the club by committing a considerable sum of money, they understandably expect to receive a high level of customer service and satisfaction.
As well as these issues, supporters have also been showing an interest in the break down of the memberships which have been sold. In previous seasons supporters have enjoyed having the knowledge of how many season ticket holders the club has. In the interests of transparency, he Trust encourages the club to release the break down of memberships, so that supporters can know just how many season ticket holders there are for this season.
We look forward to the club responding to the concerns of the supporters and hope that they act to ensure a more positive experience for all supporters in future.
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