Woking FC going digital – the historical moment of two Card’s supporters
We made sure to capture the historical moment of the first match ticket holders entering through the gates with a ticket purchased online. We got the opportunity to learn more about them, to ask about their relationship with the club and their impression of the new digital experience.
The TicketCo team was there that sunny (but chilly!) day at The Laithwaite Community Stadium, the 10th March 2018 when Woking played FC Halifax Town. This was the day when home supporters and away fans could enter the stadium with their digital tickets for the very first time – a digital implementation carried out by TicketCo earlier this year.
Woking FC supporters Ryan and Louis
It was the Woking FC supporters Ryan Campbell and his son Louis who first got to the turnstiles to find out they were the first people ever to buy an online ticket to a match.
We are quite excited as it is like being a small part of Woking FC history!, said a happy Ryan.
Ryan Campbell, showing his digital ticket. Woking FC’s chairman Peter Jones in the background. Behind the desk: Kristianna Moberg, account manager at TicketCo, together with one of Woking FC’s volunteers.
Their first season as Woking FC supporters
And they are already loving it:
Me and my son Louis are in our first season as Woking FC supporters – we live in Hindhead so it’s our nearest club. I’ve always been a football fan and some of my happiest childhood memories are going to the match (I’m a Geordie so my home club is Newcastle). Now that Louis is seven I was keen to find a club we could support together. From our first game we’d bought the kit and going to support the club is already something we love.
A community hero
Ryan works at the children’s hospice Demelza that provides care and support for seriously ill babies, children, young people and their families, across East Sussex, Kent and South East London. Ryan helps those who may not live a long life, to live a full life.
I work as Chief Executive of the children’s hospice. Having a team to support is a great way of turning off from the delights and the pressures of quite an intense job – and it’s good to see that Woking also have good connections to the hospice movement with their promotion of Woking Hospice.
Appreciates the ‘proper’ football experience
Ryan and Louis already have a great impression of the club:
Funnily enough, going to see Woking is a lot like my childhood football experiences in the 80’s – from the burger and Bovril stalls, to being able to choose where to sit or stand it’s much nearer to the ‘proper’ football experience compared to Premiership games. And the standard of football is great – with a mix of young players (and manager) who might well go far, and seasoned players who know the lower leagues and the style of play inside out. Given that the players are actual human beings who live nearby rather than multi-millionaires you would never get to meet, it feels like a much closer connection between player and supporter – like you’re all in it together. I get the real impression that the manager and players care about the supporters, just as the supporters care about them.
Nathan Baxter as favourite
Ryan sees some real promise ahead for the club:
Our favourite player is Nathan Baxter. He’s a gifted and assured keeper and I wouldn’t be surprised if he makes the top flight sometime soon. The Cards have had a tricksy season – there’s some real promise and sometimes it comes together perfectly, but there are also lots of gaps as it’s not quite working yet. Without Nathan I think we’d be looking at next season a division lower. From his first few appearances, I’m also quite excited about Louie Theophanous. As a big hard centre forward he reminds me a bit of Duncan Ferguson.
The convenience of buying tickets online
Ryan had a very positive experience with buying the match tickets online and appreciated the everyday convenience it brings, without any extra charges:
The process itself was very easy – online and at the ground. I like that there are no extra charges, and you can do it ages before the game or when you’re walking down the road just about to arrive at the stadium. I think it’s great to now be able to just go on the website and buy the tickets and not having to stop at the bank on the way in. It’s just something which makes things a bit more convenient.
A great addition to Woking FC’s digital presence
When we asked about how he thinks this digital move will affect the club, Ryan believes this is a natural extension to the club’s already great online presence:
Digital tickets builds on the digital presence of Woking FC. Woking has a good website, with lots of good information on it, an active Twitter feed, and a very good Youtube channel for highlights and post-match interviews. Digital tickets is another piece of that jigsaw.
Digital season tickets next
Woking FC is due to release TicketCo’s digital season tickets, with a unique functionality that doesn’t require the club to manually handle and sending out the season tickets. It works with an auto-renewal functionality which communicates with the audience and let’s them renew with a one-click function – without the need of usernames and passwords. The audience can enter the stadium with the season tickets the same way as with digital day tickets – by scanning the QR code on the turnstile or get it scanned from a tablet or mobile by one of the volunteers. When we asked Ryan if he would get one he happily responded:
I don’t see why not!