Member Insights: The Power of Community
By Aimee Howells | March 20, 2020
In this time of uncertainty, I wanted to reflect on what makes this world ace and that is the core sense of community.
With my rich history working in the world of sport, there is an abundance of evidence that shows when times get tough, people do pull together. Probably the most famous being The Christmas Truce, which was the widespread unofficial ceasefires along the Western Front of the First World War around Christmas 1914.
When it comes to marketing and engagement in the world of sport there are two clear favourites of mine that showcase that when a community cares, they go the extra mile.
“My Blood is Red and Black” for Hemoba (The blood bank of Bahia State) and E.C.Vitória there was a rally call for fans to donate their blood at times of crisis. To mobilise this the red was drained from the stripes of the shirt, promising to put them back as people donated blood, leading to fan engagement and a rise in donations.
“Mobilise the 12th Man” was a campaign where for security reasons no fans were allowed in to Tunisian stadiums anymore. This forced teams and fans into a long-distance relationship. After average results throughout the season and, with the year’s most important game approaching, Historical Football team C.S. Hammam-Lif needed the support of its fans. The 12th Man App was created to connect fans to 40 speakers in the stadium to allow them to cheer on their team while watching the game live on TV. Fans could sing, shout, applaud just by tapping on sound icons. The more fans tapped, the louder the sound in the stadium and the more support the team felt.
This sense of community is so prevalent right now as we can see so many amazing ways that communities are uniting and supporting each other, showing that passion in community isn’t just centred within a fanbase.
The Superpower of the Supermarkets. Obviously, supermarkets are central to our communities and with high demand and strain on them, instead of isolating their approach they are joining forces to form a consortium to ensure our communities are looked after.
Community comes first. Local restaurants are adapting their approach by offering takeaway services or free food parcels that can be picked up to help support our neighbours. Deliveroo have also launched a fund to support their drivers who are at the heart of their business to ensure they are safe while they work by offering non-contact deliveries and financial support for their riders in case of illness.
Re-purposing Product Lines. The alcohol industry is showing adaptability and consideration around their community, with the likes of Dunnet Bay and Brew Dog creating hand sanitiser to help with the shortage that their community is facing.
Connecting Communities Virtually. Everyone by now would have seen the balconies of Italy come alive with music connecting people which showcases the absolute spirit of community. With Defected Records now as well creating a Virtual Festival which will broadcast for 12 hours tomorrow, it shows that in this digitally connected world that we can be inventive and innovative around how we connect people and ensure that the show must go on.
It’s a prime time now to sit back and re-calibrate and think about what your community means to you, and how we can continue to engage with each other in exciting and innovative ways. Whether that be a local community drive and CSR, an app, creating a virtual community or creating exciting and entertaining content in order to keep connecting and embracing the power of what makes us special as human beings.
How are you mobilising the power of your 12th man?
Aimeé Howells is a Brand Relationship Manager at GO!