The NRL season is back soon and along with my fellow NRL and rugby league fans, I am pumped to be getting back out to games at a time when the game seems to be even bigger than ever…..but maybe it’s just Tina Turner singing in the background. Anyway…..
In an effort to see why I should become a member of an NRL club and what benefits each team offered their fans for the 2020 season, I sent an email under the alias Jack Gilmore (a combination of two of my favourite fictional film sports characters in Jackie Moon from Semi-Pro and Happy Gilmore from Happy Gilmore) to ask a couple of questions and see how teams would reply. (Note: Having worked with the majority of clubs in some capacity, I used an alias because if I used my real name they’d have caught on straight away and I wanted to get 100% honest and genuine replies).
I wanted to see the following:
- Who responded the quickest
- Who didn’t respond at all. Hopefully, they’d all reply. Every team needs every fan to sign up to increase memberships.
- Why I should become a member of each club and who answered the specific question ‘Why Should I Become A Member of your club’
- What benefits were included in memberships compared to others across the NRL
- Who was persistent and followed up by trying to get the membership and sale finalized
- Who came across as genuine and authentic rather than an auto-reply response
Here are the results:
National Rugby League:
- 11 of the 16 teams I emailed had replied with responses at the time of writing this blog post on Wednesday morning 4/3/2020.
- Six teams replied with automatic responses within one minute of my email (these were Newcastle, NZ, Melbourne, Parramatta, Brisbane, and Gold Coast) with four of these following up afterward with more detailed responses. This was a simple way to both illustrate that the team had received the email, that the fan would get a reply soon and that they immediately received confirmation that their request was being actioned.
- The Storm and Knights didn’t follow up on their initial emails saying they’d get back to me though which is fine as you’d assume that more than likely a fan would follow up with the auto-reply.
- Not a single club sent a follow-up email when I had not responded within a week so it would be interesting to see how persistent they are before getting back to these potential fans to try to sign them up closer to the season start date. You have to be persistent.
- Only 8 of 16 actually bothered to answer my question about why I should support the team. Listening is vital.
I sent an email out to every team’s membership email account at 10am on Tuesday the 25th of February which stated:
I’m looking at becoming a member this year having recently relocated back home.
Just a GA seat, one seat for me, cheapest, please.
What is the best reason to become a member of the club and why should I bother?
At the time of writing this on 4/3/2020, of the 16 teams I wrote to using their membership emails, only 11 of the clubs responded to my email asking about becoming a member.
I followed up with an email to the five who didn’t respond on Wednesday morning 4 March seeking to see about a reply to my initial email. It’s totally understandable that these emails can fall through the cracks but for someone wanting to sign up it’s imperative that this happens infrequently so as to avoid a potential lost sale and membership.
By Wednesday afternoon I had heard back from two more clubs so 13 of the 16 had responded by Wednesday afternoon.
Of the 11 teams who responded after my initial email:
- Fastest response: 11 minutes from Parramatta. Brilliant.
- 6 responded within 42 minutes
- 8 responded on the same day
- 10 responded within 1 day and a few hours
- 8 actually answered the question I asked about why it’s worth becoming a member and why I should do that
I guess what was one thing that was interesting was that of the six teams who followed up instantly with automatic replies saying they’d get back to me ASAP, two of those (Melbourne and Newcastle) didn’t actually respond until I wrote back to them and then they did which was great to see.
An important thing to note is that I don’t think fans should expect a reply straight away and the clubs made mention of this in the automatic replies that they’d respond in one to two days. However, it is absolutely vital that all enquiries are actioned and the loop is closed sufficiently by replying to either get the fan over the line and bag the sale/membership and/or to collect the data (name/email) to follow up with at a later point when trying again whether that is next week, month or season. They’ve reached out to you and are halfway towards a sale.
The following is the time the team responded along with the total time from
- It is vital to follow up with everyone who contacts your business. And then follow up again….and again. Not harassing them and certainly not when they’ve told you to stop but you have to be persistent. Sometimes it’s a long game. They have made the effort to engage with you which means they are halfway there to a sale.
- It’s great to have an automatic reply but if you don’t follow up these are pointless.
- Being genuine and authentic will lead to a sale. The responses below where the membership team person went out of their way to tell me why I should sign up actually enticed me to think about doing just that if I lived locally to those clubs.
- Answering the question that is asked cuts down time for both parties back and forth, gives the person what they’re after and highly likely leads to a sale as they have all the information to make an informed buying decision.
- Asking to call or grab a number is important. The more info you can collect the better but also the chances of a sale are higher if you can speak to a person and state your case effectively and clearly in person or over the phone.
- Never be afraid to upsell or talk about add-on’s and trying to sell other items. Sometimes the customer/fan doesn’t know what’s available and you might just have an even better deal for them plus bringing in more selling points leads to more sales. I was surprised that no one bothered to talk about hospitality or merchandise or try to push me with upselling to get even more bang for my buck (although perhaps that’s where they did listen as I mentioned I only wanted the cheapest GA ticket)
- Not many asked me questions about my motivations for buying. That’s important as it can answer a lot of questions to round out a sale.
- All in all, what a bargain these NRL memberships are! I can’t wait to get out to the grounds in 2020.
- I’d love to have seen the Tigers, Sharks and Panthers replies too however these memberships are available in the links if anyone wants to view them. They are equally impressive too.
- If you’re an NRL member sign up to your club and support the game. NRL has never been in a better position and as a hardcore fan myself I am pumped to be getting back out to the grounds.
The following are the responses from each club along with some notes.
Thank you for your email.
That’s great to hear you are interested in becoming a member!
I highly recommend our General Admission membership as I will list below what you receive in it.
Note: if you buy a full season general admission adult pass you receive a free junior up to the age of 18.
General Admission (11 games): unreserved
Junior: Free with full paying adult or $100 for an extra junior
- Sticker set
- Sticker set
- Junior cap
As being a 2020 member, you will also receive a range of benefits such as:
- Integrated game day public transport
- Access to the brand-new members offers program
- Access to Members Lounge ’47
- Access to Members’ loyalty program, including Member Loyalty Events
- Access to cash-back member seat resale program (Reserved Seat Members only)
- 10% discount off selected Eels home game tickets
- BONUS! 15% discount at the Eels Online Store
- Priority buying window for all Eels home games
- Priority buying window for NRL major events
- Member Event Invitations
- Member-first club communication
I hope this helps you understand the way our memberships work in more detail.
- Super fast response
- Loaded with info on memberships and inclusions
- Actually sounds like the best membership to sign up to as well given all the benefits. Parra fans have it good there.
New Zealand Warriors
Thank you for your e-mail and we appreciate all of your support and interest in becoming a member for the 2020 season! We are eager for the upcoming 2020 season as the boys have been training extremely hard and are all in for a great season ahead, so we’d love to have you on board during this exciting time! The following options would be your General Admission memberships for the season and I’ve included the benefits that you receive as a member-
The Interchange (general admission) Membership Options are as follows-
– Either 5, 9 or 18-ticket General Admission passes
Full Season – Flexi 5 game ($85 in total)
Flexi 9 game ($144 in total)
Flexi 18 game ($270 in total)
– Can spread all games across the season or use all at once with your friends and family
– An adult membership pack which includes a CCC member’s cap, Vodafone Warriors bumper sticker, 2020 memberships pass and lanyard
– Access to members-only online newsletter
– Access to the members’ clubroom
– 10% ticket discount to Vodafone Warriors regular season home games at Mt Smart
– 10% merchandise discount at our super store or online at www.warriorsstore.co.nz
– Second-priority ticketing access to NRL Finals and State of Origin
If you are able to attend every home game at Mt Smart Stadium, I would consider the Flexi 9 option for $144 for the season. Alternatively, if you needed a bit more flexible of an option and you are not able to attend all of the home games I’d suggest the Flexi 5 option for $85. If you plan on bringing someone else along to every game with you I’d consider the Flexi 18 for $270.
Thanks again Jack and please let me know if you have any other questions and I’d be happy to help.
- Provided options
- Added a link
- Added info on membership inclusions
- Fantastic answer as to why I should sign on as a member
St. George Illawarra Dragons
Thanks for your email and interest in becoming a Red V Member.
Membership is the highest commitment a supporter can make to their club – which we reward for your direct financial contribution. All members would receive exclusive benefits including the best value for home game tickets and away ticket offers, discounts on Dragons merchandise, exclusive access to meet the team through member events, and chances to win member experiences and prizes! You can read more about our member benefits here.
Currently, all members who sign up by the 2nd March will be included on our annual Red V Member Wall. The yearly designed wall will show the names of all members who have signed up prior to that deadline and will be displayed at all Dragons home games and selected member events. Members will also receive exclusive access to an Anzac Day ticket pre-sale next week with 20% off tickets (along with existing 20% off all Dragons home game tickets) and a pre-sale for the NRL Grand Final later in March!
For information and images regarding your membership pack, please click here.
You would have multiple options regarding a GA seat – it would depend on how many games you’d get to throughout the year. Your options would include:
Flexi 3 GA for $70: Access to 3 Dragons home games between Kogarah or Wollongong
Wollongong Pass GA for $135: Access to 6 Dragons home games at Wollongong
Kogarah Plus GA for $135: Access to 5 Dragons home games at Kogarah and 1 at the SCG for Anzac Day
Full Season GA for $240: Access to all 12 Dragons home games
Let us know if you had any further questions.
- Provided a very good response to my question about why I should get a membership
- Added a link to memberships
- Provided different options
- All members signed up before 2/3 also had the chance to be on the REDV wall too.
Thank you for your email. Great to hear you are interested in becoming a Member.
Our coach Trent Robinson describes our Members as the foundation of our club. The support from our Members by turning up to games and paying Membership fees plays a big role in the club’s success.
If you are interested in general admission seating, the Bronze Membership is your best choice. The Membership costs $150, which includes access to 10 home games (8x SCG, 1 Gosford, 1 North Sydney Oval), which is a significant saving in comparison to purchasing a GA ticket ($30/game pre-sale) to every home game. As a Member, you can also purchase tickets with a 10% discount at Central Coast and 30% at SCG home games so that it is also more affordable to bring family and friends with you to games.
The bronze Membership is counted as a Ticketed Membership, which includes receiving your Membership card, lanyard, keyring, stickers and fixture magnet, and a coupon so that you can collect your choice of a cap, scarf or can cooler at a home game, Members BBQ, or from the Spring St entrance at Easts Leagues.
To purchase the Bronze Membership, please visit: https://am.ticketmaster.com/roosters/bronze-membership#/
Alternatively you can call us on 1300 327 871 to purchase your Membership.
- Answered my question about why its good to become a member
- Provided link to the membership
- Provided info on what’s included in membership packs
Thanks for your email. Please use the link below to find all our exclusive member benefits for season 2020. Due to a large influx of members this year we recommend purchasing your membership at some point today in order to ensure that you receive a membership pack.
We hope to see you as part of the Raiders family in season 2020.
- Provided a link to memberships
It is great to hear you are looking to become a member with us for the 2020 season!
With regard to your requirements, were you looking at a full season membership or possibly a 4 game membership?
A great reason to become a member with us this year is that we strongly believe 2020 will be a massive year for the boys on the field, and we think it’s not one to be missed. Aside from that though by becoming a member for 2020 you also gain access to a myriad of benefits which include; discounted home game tickets through Ticketek for family and friends, pre-sale access to NRL finals games involving us, access to discounts in our Team Store, plus access to offers from our many sponsors and partners.
By also becoming a member you have access to exclusive member content via our Member Mail email which is sent to you each week. This content also includes member only competitions that you can enter which gives you access to prizes and experiences that non-members and fans can’t get.
For more information on all of our membership packages you can head to our membership website via the link here. If you would like to discuss any of our options as well you can certainly give us a call anytime
- Answered the question quite well and got me excited for the season ahead.
- Provided heaps of information and a membership link
- Told me about membership incentives and information like competitions and merch
- A side note on this. I bought my Broncos membership for 2020 last week and they were equally switched on to helping me out as they were to helping old mate ‘Jack’ out lol.
North Queensland Cowboys
I have link below our Gold Star Unreserved Membership, which is our GA product.
Feel free to have a look over the inclusion and if you have any questions let me know
- Far out, I love the Cowboys and can’t wait to get up to the new stadium for the opening game but….
They got my fake name wrong! haha this actually made me laugh so kudos for that.
A few grammatical errors but who cares really about these at least they responded!
Didn’t tell me why it’d be great to support the team or any benefits
Provided a link to memberships which was useful to look over and get excited about.
The most glaring omission is the fact that YOU HAVE A BRAND NEW STADIUM TO TELL ME ABOUT BUT MADE NO MENTION OF IT! A key thing a fan would want to know about.
Still, these things happen and no doubt they are under the pump with the brand new stadium and doing a superb job in getting everything ready for the opening game. As a proud North Queenslander supporter, I still bought a jersey this year too. Up the Cowboys!
Manly Sea Eagles
We have GA Memberships for $205 for the season. This includes all 10 Lottoland home games.
The way our GA seating works is on a first come first served basis, so you would need to secure your own seat.
With this specific pack you have the option of receiving either a cap, beanie or scarf, as well as a Member card, lanyard, sticker and keyring.
One of the best benefits is the cost. A Membership works out much cheaper than purchasing tickets game by game.
In addition to this your receive a 10% discount on merchandise, pre-sale access to different Rugby Leagues events such as NRL finals and Origin. We also hold Member only events throughout the season too, such as our Members Christmas BBQ where all players are in attendance
That is kind of our Membership in a nutshell, I guess most importantly though it’s the best way to support the Club that you follow!
Please see the link below for additional information about the specific pack it sounds would be most suitable for you:
Another thing to note, is we also have 3 or 5 game GA Memberships if you don’t think you’ll make all 10 games.
- Provided extra info and insights
- Provided link to membership
- Told me why its good to support the club
- Talked about the benefits
- Told me what incentives and inclusions are in the packs
Gold Coast Titans
Thank you for reaching out to the Membership Team upon your move back home!
If you’re looking to attend home games this year at Cbus Super Stadium, having a Membership with the club is the best financial option in which to do so and you receive an exclusive Member’s cap and pack. In addition to this, if you wish to purchase additional tickets you receive a 15% Member’s discount, an invitation to exclusive member events, free public transport on game-day, a Parkwood Social Membership, and free feeder club entry, amongst other benefits.
We’d love to have you onboard for our fight in 2020 so please see below for a link to the packages:
If you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to respond to this email or alternatively give us a call via our hotline as we’d be more than happy to help.
I look forward to hearing from you soon!
- Provided membership link
- Answered question about the cheapest option
- Told me why it’s good to be a member
Thank you for contacting the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
I have attached the link with details of the General Admission Member Pack https://membership.rabbitohs.com.au/general-admission/.
This Membership is a Full Season Member Pass, meaning that you will have access to all Rabbitohs NSW Home Games Plus Reciprocal Away Games and pick your seat in our General Admission Seating each Match.
-You will receive a Cap/Scarf (Member’s Choice Item)
-$20 online merchandise voucher
-10% off Rabbitohs Merch
-Rabbitohs Rewards Pass
-Exclusive Sponsor Offers
-Entry to the 2020 Member’s Tipping Competition
-Access to P&O Member’s Deck at post-match functions
-Choose from a selection of players on your Member card
Scroll through the link to view these items visually.
If you don’t think you are going to be present at all the Home Games, we do have the option of purchasing a Flexi 3 or 5 game Membership which will grant you access to either 3 or 5 Home Games depending on what suits you best.
Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.
- Provided merch info and inclusions in the membership pack
- Provided link to the memberships
- Didn’t tell me why I should support the team
Thank you for contracting the Bulldogs Membership Team.
That’s good to hear mate that you are interested in becoming a Bulldogs Membership for the 2020 season.
We are only a couple of days out from our first game of the season and the Club and teams need you and your support for the 2020 season.
Our cheapest General Admission membership is the Blue Zone membership for $145.
The following link contains all the information regarding the Blue zone membership: https://www.bulldogs.com.au/membership/packages/general-admission/blue-zone/
Could you please give me a day and time that suits you best so I can give you a call to renew your membership for 2020?
If you have any questions please feel free to give us a call back on 1300 769 164 or simply respond to this email.
- Provided a membership link
- Provided a number to call
- Provided the cheapest option
- Answered question about membership
- Asked to follow up with me with a call
Thank you for your email
Below is a link to our membership packages
What is your best contact number to call you on regarding this
Looking forward to hearing back from you
- Asked to call me to follow up which was good to see. A genuine call gets a higher chance of a sale every time.
- Linked in info on membership info
- Didn’t answer the question about why I should become a member of the Storm but would likely do that over phone
He is a link to our membership website https://knightshub.com.au/membership/, here you will be able to browse the different memberships we have on offer and choose what best suits you. Each of our membership offers discounts on merchandise and ticketing on top of the membership pack that you will receive.
The greatest part about becoming a member is showing your support and becoming a part of a club you feel passionate about.
Please let me know if I can help you with anything further.
- Answered the question quite well here
- Provided links and info
- No response to the initial email
- No response to follow up email
- No response to the initial email
- No response to follow up email
- No response to the initial email
- No response to follow up email
A note on Cronulla, Penrith and Wests Tigers. Even if these three caught on that this wasn’t a real member inquiry the fact that the vast majority are all cut and paste automatic reply emails means it doesn’t take much effort to just reply. The emails have no doubt fallen into the spam, opened and closed or just forgotten about folder. Even after I bothered to follow up with another email. However, whatever the case if you’re a fan of these clubs and myself having done their games days, I’d still 100% sign up for a membership of these clubs as they’re all doing exceptional things in the community and on game days. Plus….suburban grounds, gotta love that!