We often write about how to look after your brand.

Well, this is more of a personal observation about the weekends activities, with the ultimate message of how not to manage a brand, as I observe a long-standing sports event erode their considerable fan base, and potentially alienate seriously loyal followers.

OK. The V8’s are, in all honesty, not my cup of tea.
However, they are the perfect afternoon delight for many fans, including the man of our house.
When V8 noises are rumbling all weekend, I know that I have a happy husband.

This weekend, I have heard sporadic V8 rumbles, and countless remarks of frustration, and to be honest, bewilderment.
Not a happy husband at all.

In August 2014, the V8 Supercars found themselves a new television channel, with much fanfare about bringing the sport to more fans, and generally, in a better way.
The first weekend telecast was, according to fans, ordinary, including second rate commentary.
This weekend, there has been no relentless televising of the event, rather a ‘package’ of highlights, with instructions to subscribe to Fox Sports to see more.

Well, hasn’t there been a hullaballoo! Social media platforms have gone wild. Facebook is showing posts like:

‘Unlike v8supercars ppl ! Show them who is p*ssed (sic)’
‘V8s are now dead RIP. No live coverage on free to air and rule changes over the next few yrs taking it back to the touring car era. So sad RIP (sic)’
‘you need to rethink who you let cover the v8s as you are losing your fan base because a lot off us can not afford FOXTEL and will not pay for something that is a Aussie right as it is us Aussies that make it (sic)’

Here are my observations on this unfortunate situation.

1. There has been very poor communication with the fan base who ultimately drive this event.
2. The presentation of the new product packaging in the media has been confusing.
3. Changing the way a brand is expected to behave without communicating it effectively is not a great idea.
4. Social Media, particularly Facebook, has gone wild, and at this time, we have not seen a response. Our advice? Always respond, never put your head in the sand.

Whether your business is large or small consistency is key to engagement. You never know who is looking!
It will be interesting to see if changes are made based on fan feedback – will keep you posted!