Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Customer “service?”

OnGoal has been the owner of our beloved Kansas City Wizards for two years now. There have been many wonderful things done since they took over ownership: new stadium plans, a temporary home, and they are showing some signs of support towards the group of fans who stand in the Cauldron.

Their stated goal is to grow the Cauldron through a grassroots campaign. Those efforts paid off immensely last season with a huge influx of fans to the section. I admire the work that has been done by both OnGoal and the leadership of the Cauldron, however there are storms-a-brewing which may result in those efforts being for naught.

Customer service should be a primary tenet of OnGoal.

During the middle of last season up to 3:00 pm, the Friday before game day Cauldron tickets were reduced in price, below the level of what Cauldron season ticket holders paid, in an effort to continue to grow the section. OnGoal promised to compensate the Cauldron STHs for this with the offer of a jersey at cost. Here we are, a year later, and we still have yet to see the fulfillment of this promise. And no, free customization does not count.

Community America Ballpark was chosen as the temporary home of our team. To accommodate the Cauldron, the left field berm was paved and bleachered. This cost has been passed on to the Cauldron in the form of higher ticket prices compared to previous years. Not in and of itself a big deal, but the way in which it was accomplished left a bitter taste in the mouth of some fans thus spawning the creation of this collective.

Since the collective started, pressure behind the scenes has been brought to bear on another member of this collective to edit a post critical of the Cauldron in CAB. The tactic was effective and the offending entry was changed. Nothing was said publicly by the blogger but it was certainly noticed by regular readers.

We move to this season and the discovery that it is possible again to buy Cauldron tickets cheaper than STH prices (granted it’s by a minuscule amount but cheaper nonetheless). This, despite claims by OnGoal , they would not undercut their valued STH base like they had done last season.

When this was pointed out on Big Soccer, there was quite a dustup as a member of the organization came in to defend the action. Might this have been the same person referred to in the Collective post: Wizards Employee May Not Support First Amendment Rights. And if it was, perhaps said person has been pressuring others to change posts as well. Or maybe even call in a flash mob of non-employees to help stoke the fires of support for the team.

As the owners of the Wizards, OnGoal should have customer service as one of their top priorities. They have reportedly 10K paying customers for every home game. Keeping those customers happy should be nearly as important as putting quality on the pitch. Currently, OnGoal is not doing so well on the former. I can only hope this situation improves.

This has been,
Baine’s hunt and peck finger.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i'd write an opposing opinion but you would just delete it as always.