With excitement palpably building up in the days ahead of Bengaluru FC’s inaugural I-League game, the club is keenly seeking to reach out to fans in the city. Apart from campaigns on social media, tickets have been made available for purchase online and merchandise put up on sale.
Most Indian football clubs — Pune FC a notable exception — have traditionally failed to market themselves or interact hugely with supporters.
“We want to change the whole matchday experience. We want to emulate what is happening abroad and we’re trying to run it in a manner different from other clubs,” Mustafa Ghouse, CEO of JSW Sports, part of the OP Jindal group that owns the club, said.
Tickets for Sunday’s season-opener with Mohun Bagan, priced at Rs. 30, 50, 150, 300, and 450, have been put up for sale on the website bookmyshow.com, and will also be available at the Bangalore Football Stadium.
To cater to all sections
“We want to cater to all sections of the city with our prices,” Ghouse said. “At 30 and 50 rupees we won’t even be covering what we’ve spent on refurbishing the stadium. So gate revenues are not something we are worried about. We want to bring fans in.”
Demands for tickets have been huge, with the 300 and 450 rupee categories — that include hospitality — selling out quickly, Ghouse said.
“The response through social media has been overwhelming. We have had lots of inquiries for season tickets,” he added.
The club has also tied up with Arbor Brewing Company, a pub close to the stadium, to screen games and sell tickets and merchandise. “I don’t know of any other place that is prepared to screen Indian football,” Ghouse said.