Celtic values and supporter interactions


Pleased to see this morning’s initiative by Celtic to provide people with a more visible and accessible complaints procedure, including an “Our commitment to you” section.  I know it’s almost blasphemous to use the word ‘customer’ in a football context, but when it comes to levels of service, it is useful to benchmark the ‘customer experience’ at Celtic Park, which is patchy and often disappointing.

I’ve been meaning to pick up this topic for a while but there is a Supporters’ Forum coming up next month, where various supporters’ groups will be given a chance to put issues of concern to the club, and I planned to raise it directly with the club before writing about it here.

Celtic have a great brand (if you indulge me with another blasphemous but useful term), born to feed the hungry, champion of the underdog, fundraiser for the poor and needy in Scotland and across the globe.  We still have the unique Seville legacy – which is 11 years old today – and on Saturday, 47 years after their own crowning moment, the remaining Lisbon Lions will cast their considerable shadow over European football, but a great deal of the ‘customer contact’ reflects a club weary from more recent skirmishes.  It needed be this way.

We are one of the world’s unique brand properties, like Disney, but a lot smaller, of course.  Every customer contact, every public-facing decision, should reflect this.  Disney understand this.  They make you pay ridiculous amounts for their tat, but you pay willingly, because every customer contact reflects the highest service levels achievable.  None of this comes on minimum wage, you need to select, train and retain good staff, who remain in place irrespective of available alternatives.

Legendary customer service is expensive, but if you own a uniquely ethical brand, paying that expense can be profitable.

Look around at brand management elsewhere.  BP throw an environmentally responsible ‘better use of energy’ message at you straight from their home page, and they are one of the world’s most notorious polluters.  Barcelona give their ‘More than a club’ message the prime spot (top left) on their home page, without a notion of irony around their tax or Qatar cash transactions.  Apple have “Apple and the environment” prominently on their home page.  They have little to do with the environmental movement, but they know how important to their business it is to maintain their unique brand.

Ethically, Celtic are miles ahead of any of these outfits but you need to go hunt for our considerable ethical works on the club website.

What should Celtic do when training, match day stewards, or kiosk staff (don’t start me)?  What should we do when faced with an expensive business decision?  Consult the brand values.  Brand values are absolutely sacrosanct and the cost of maintaining them should be looked on as an opportunity to invest in them.  At the moment lots of areas are under-invested in, reflecting completely different values to those who rush into the ground on match day.

Our values are to build a great football club which improves Health, promotes Equality, encourages Learning and tackles Poverty.  Celtic do this through the very real help they give to thousands of people through Celtic FC Foundation.  This is where we are today but all of this should have a higher profile.

When you visit the Celtic web site two days before season ticket renewal deadline day (today), you should be smacked around the senses with our work on Health, Equality, Learning and Poverty.  Do that and the drag-through to renewals or merchandise sales will follow, ask Apple or Disney.

We need confidence in this strategy.  I know it’s expensive, things are tight and demands enormous, but these values, this unique brand, is why we will flourish for another century.

If you want to raise a question at the Supporters’ Forum leave a note below.

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  1. weeminger…………….Chinese torture effect mate, just reached tipping point.



    I think we had 14 Sat 3 o’clock games this season again. That’s 5 games that have been shifted. That’s 10 tickets I needn’t have bought, roughly £250.

  2. Auldheid:



    It appears to me, maybe naively granted, that the supporters of football teams in Scotland want a level playing field. In that quest, the smaller clubs and their supporters, none of whom I’ll disrespect by naming them by my opinion, look to the bigger clubs for guidance. The bigger clubs look to the biggest club for leadership only to bang their heads against a wall of silence.



    Are Celtic really just looking out for what is best for Celtic. Don’t Celtic appreciate that without the so called ‘smaller clubs’ then the day might come when Celtic are playing their shadows for the league flag. And if the shadows won then I’m sure there would be a few, and a few more too, still defending the silence.



    Look how many on here alone who have been life long supporters of Celtic who are now distressed beyond lip service and boardroom procrastination.



    The Scottish game is not about Celtic, it is most definitely not about Rangers, it is about every team in Scotland and every honest supporter in Scotland.



    You don’t know what the contract means do you? I know I don’t. But if the SPFL, or Celtic’s CEO, cared enough about our coin then they would explain it to us.



    All this pretendie nonsense is just nonsense. Tell us the truth, isn’t that the whole point, the truth wearing good governance and transparency; we are big boys after all, and some petite woman too.



    I think we all know when we are being lied to.

  3. Auldheid? When will we be hearing about Resolution 12 please? Sorry but it needs to be mentioned every now and again.

  4. Paul – good points and it raises the question as to why, in the 21st century, we (and football) are still so far behind most other areas of industry when it comes to brand management. Football is good at exploiting brand loyalty but its product rarely lives up to the brand promise – or in plainspeak, the clubs take the fans loyalty for granted regardless of how poor the matchday experieince is.


    One day a club will realise that people will happily spend more money on products that exceed their expectations.

  5. Bawsman




    12:40 on 21 May, 2014




    It’s a real drudge through the dross when a new article is posted.





    Don;t be so hard on yourself! ;-)

  6. cliftonville celt from belfast on



    10:30 on


    21 May, 2014


    Donegal tips required, looking for places to visit with 5 & 6 year olds, a small port/ cafe? been to Killybegs/ Dungloe before but looking for somewhere to keep them entertained weather permitting, cheers



    HH BBhoy





    Portsalon has a lovely wee harbour and a coffee shop/cafe



    Knockalla beach across from it was voted the 3rd most beautiful beach in the world a few years ago



    If you drive up over the mountain overlooking the beach there is a big castle on the left hand side – no sure if it is still open to the public tho



    Kerrykeel nearby has Rockhill holiday village that has loads of stuff for kids to do



    Downings is a lovely wee village too with a good beach



    Think it is all sign posted as the Atlantic Way



    Glenveagh National Park is a good day out too



    Spent 10 summers up there when I was a kid ! Beautiful part of the world

  7. Bawsman, I take it you’ve never enjoyed the thrill of the chase for the podium, or the unbridled joy of actually winning one?



    Try it, it will make the “drudge” a bit more enjoyable:-)

  8. Paul, I was once told by a senior manager in one of the worlds most recognisable companies that it takes six times the effort and cost to attract one new loyal customer than it does to hang on to one old one.

  9. Folly Folly




    12:37 on 21 May, 2014




    So, Paul, are you saying Celtic is a Mickey Mouse outfit, then … ?


    and sevco are Donald ducked

  10. I wonder just how many supporters/ match attendees/ customers are members of the various supporters’ bodies. I think there are a lot of us “independents” who travel to matches under our own steam and don’t see the need to join supporters’ groups.



    And the move away from 3pm Saturday kick offs also means I have heard a few folk say they have left local clubs as now they often travel to games from work or with friends/ family.



    I guess my point is, what % of the fan base is the club engaged with? And how do the rest of us engage? Can we see CQN as a virtual supporters’ club?



    (That’s a virtual club for supporters, not a club for virtual supporters of course)

  11. Thindimebhoy on

    Question for the Supporters Forum



    About this clause with the TV people guaranteeing 4 games between Celtic and whatever incarnation is over at Ibrox.



    Can we be sure this guarantee had no influence in relation to the rules of the game



    Specifically when oldco went bust…?






    We all know the answer still I thought we could ask again because it still stinks from where I am sitting

  12. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    What happened to the unique Seville legacy money?



    I think if you asked 100 Celtic supporters what Celtic’s values are you would get [at least ] a thousand answers.

  13. Bawsman


    12:35 on


    21 May, 2014



    Fair point, and I totally get you. Occasionally though these posts read like it’s a new phenomena. Apologies for jumping so quickly.

  14. Last game of the season and the usual appalling retail experience, 15 minute wait, run out of pies, overpriced fare served by wee lads running about clueless.


    Have been in the same seat in the main stand for last 18 years and not one jot of improvement in the catering.


    Is it really so hard?


    Make an effort Celtic, the match experience is dire compared to equivalent English teams


    Inelastic demand may not last for ever

  15. Paul 67



    I’ll gather up posts that are directed at the Supporters Forum but can I ask those making a point or asking a question to put


    “Supporters Forum ” at the top to make it easier to spot them.



    All posts are sent in with like ones grouped together for SLO to cover at the Forum.

  16. blantyretim is praying for the Knox family on

    Fans being taken for suckers?



    not by the new age media surely………?

  17. Well after absolutely no deliberation or second thoughts that’s two season tickets renewed. I appreciate and respect everyone’s views and thoughts, I agree with loads and disagree with some, ultimately all I want to do is watch Celtic play against anyone, apart from a former well known Glasgow “institutions”.



    God speed to Ayrshirtim on his journey today, see ye on yer return.



    Ayrshire is Green and White

  18. ohh and anyone know of bar showing the CL gemme on Sat in the Fort Myers are of Fla



    long shot I know

  19. GourockEmeraldBhoy on

    Is £5 the normal charge for a credit card transaction, seemed an awful lot to add onto my bhoys £50 ticket. Although I think I asked the same question last year…







  20. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    ‘Can we see CQN as a virtual supporters’ club?’



    I posted on here years ago that CQN was like a supporter’s bus on the information super highway.



    And like any [non] virtual supporters bus it will have it’s fair share of bams and cliques.



    There will be those who want to lead the singin’ and those who just want to sit quietly and admire the view.

  21. DeniaBhoy


    12:43 on


    21 May, 2014



    There are very few other businesses where your loyalty is all but guaranteed. Mobile contract rubbish – easy to change, utilities supplier rubbish easy to change.



    Services at the game rubbish – can’t change your team. However, football is now being challenged left, right and centre by other entertainment possibilities so the clubs really need to up their game.

  22. Question for Forum re trophy presentations.


    When will the league trophy be presented in a way that the majority of fans can view it?


    The most recent was worst of all ……. yet again most of the crowd were big screen watchers and then there were all the choreographed photo opps …… it was about 20 minutes or so before the players went on lap of honour.


    Football is nothing without the fans? On presentation day, sponsors, media and pyrotechnics take precedence. And while I am on a rant ……. cut out the persistently deafening and often unwelcome music and let the fans get on with celebrating in songs of their choice ( within the la, of course).



    Rant over.

  23. Auldheid:



    Why do they need to know what questions will be asked in advance, why?

  24. GourockEmeraldBhoy


    12:51 on


    21 May, 2014



    Ticketmaster charge 12.5%, so 10% would be in the normal area.

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