The Fan Engagement Pod
Bradford City's Ryan Sparks on communicating difficult decisions & building for the future
Welcome to the Fan Engagement Chat, the episode of the Fan Engagement Pod where we hear about someone’s approach to Fan Engagement.
This one’s with Ryan Sparks, CEO of Bradford City AFC
We’d already interviewed him back in Episode 11, but decided to have a second chat with Ryan after he was appointed as the youngest CEO in the country. He was appointed in November 2020, and this interview was done in March 2021.
Ryan's background is in Rugby League, having worked for both Featherstone Rovers and city neighbours Bradford Bulls previously. As a result, Ryan learned his trade in an arguably much tougher environment where techniques of persuasion of fans are more important to get right.
He’s a really good listen from someone I like and admire for his straight-dealing, honesty, but sensitivity to the responsibility he’s got. He gives us great insight into the work he’d undertaken to both steady the ship, and then build for the coming years. His Twitter profile and LinkedIn page are worth having a look at for a record of the progress he’s made. Since then we also saw Bradford’s Fan Engagement rating climb massively thanks to Ryan’s work and leadership in the area, and you can find out more on https://fanengagement - where you can find out even more about how your club did. You can also register for free for the Fan Engagement Hub if you want to access more detailed data and case studies from the 2019/2020 Index.
We’re taking a break for the whole of August, and we’ll be back with a new episode of the Fan Engagement Chat on the 7th September, and new episodes of Bas Chat and did they ask the Fans too. Keep an ear out!
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Enjoy the show.