Football clubs and brands in the digital age

Class of ’92 and Salford City FC agree unique partnership with University of SalfordI’ve been reading a number of papers about football brands, digital and social capital recently. A great study I hadn’t previously seen is called Football Supporters and Football Team Brands: A study in consumer brand loyalty (Richardson and O’Dwyer, 2003). This focuses on Irish football fan support for English football clubs. It’s a topic that I’m particularly interested in and in particular the role that digital media plays in maintaining relationships with fans who may be local, or in this case, further afield. (more…)

The growth of next generation digital business at Salford

Alex Fenton at MediaCityUKI was recently interviewed by a journalist for an article in the Independent on “The Powerhouse of the North – Connecting students to business is just one of the ways management schools are improving the area’s prospects“. It’s a topic close to my heart, so I wanted to reflect more on this including:

  1. How students at Salford have access to cutting edge businesses without needing to be in capital cities. The growth of the digital sector for SMEs in Salford and Manchester and how this can rival the access the next generation of business leaders have in other cities.
  2. How being based in Salford is an advantage to entrepreneurial students, as they’re able to make great connections to the rest of the world
  3. The kind of support that’s available at The University of Salford to students and companies in terms of incubators, business advice, student internships, joint research and events that bring together SMEs, academics and students.

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A trip to Islay

Boarding the ferry at Kennacraig

Boarding the ferry at Kennacraig

It was partly the words of Jim Morrison, but mainly the Whisky Lounge that led us up to the Island of Islay in Scotland. We had taken our vans to a wet and windy Beacons Festival 2014 last year and it is there we had properly discovered the delights of Whisky. The Whisky Lounge was set up in order to educate the world about the “water of life” and the how best to drink it. They ran several events at Beacons Festival and had an amazing set up complete with Chesterfield chairs and settees and a whole lot of top quality whisky. We enjoyed it so much, we attended several of their talks over the course of the weekend. (more…)

Football & Digital Marketing – PhD research

Class of 92 purchase Salford City FC, Guardian article

Class of 92 purchase Salford City FC, Guardian article

This article is about my PhD research study in progress, which is about Football, Digital Media and Salford FC. I am a lecturer in Digital Business at the University of Salford where I am part of the Centre for Digital Business in the Business School.

In March 2014, The Class of ‘92 purchased Salford City Football Club (SCFC) (Guardian 2014). This group are composed of ex-Manchester United players Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt, Gary Neville and Phil Neville. Billionaire Peter Lim bought a 50% stake in the club in September 2014 (Conn 2014). (more…)

Beacons Festival 2014 – Chills, Thrills and Hurricanes

Beacons Festival 2014Back in 2013 we got wind of a little festival called Beacons at Funkirk Estate near Skipton on the Yorkshire Moors. We didn’t know too much about it other than a band called the Savages were playing. We did a bit more research and got ourselves booked in. We took our VW vans along and had one of the best weekends on record. The festival was relatively small but it had an amazing blend of interesting arts things combined with some really well chosen acts that kept us entertained and amused from start to finish.

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PhD methodologies, understanding positivist,interpretive, interpretative and young minds

Alex Fenton at MediaCityUKI recently started my PhD and I’ve been reading about different methodologies and philosophical stances. I’ve read several papers and books on the subject. From my understanding so far there are several ways in which to approach. First of all, a positivist study is aimed primarily at trying to prove a particular case using objective information. Meanwhile, an interpretive study looks for and carves out the meaning of particular phenomena using primarily qualitative information.
On the way home from a VW festival, my young daughter asked me what I was reading. I explained to her I was reading about how to do research and when she asked more about it, I tried to explain. (more…)

Return to Circle Yer Wagens and the TT

Lining up for the VW drive out

Lining up for the VW drive out

Back in 2011, we had the opportunity to check out the Circle Yer Wagens VW festival on the Isle of Man. The Isle of Man VW Club had arranged a brilliant deal with Steam Packet for £280 to get your van over from Heysham, entry into the festival and 3 nights camping on the Michael United football ground. We had an incredible time on our 5 night stay on the Island and we vowed to come back soon. (more…)

European Search awards 2014 & some great reasons to go to Reykjavik

European-search-awards-Alex Fenton and Aleksej Heinze Salford Business School

Alex Fenton and Aleksej Heinze at the European Search Awards

Back in blighty, my head is spinning from everything that just happened in the last 24 hours. It all started when my colleague at Salford Uni, Dr.Aleksej Heinze asked me if I wanted to get involved as tech lead for a project Salford Business School were working on called Passport to Trade 2.0. It sounded like a really cool project, researching business and social media culture in Europe and producing a website for businessculture.org with text, images, animations and videos with the results aimed at helping people to do business in different countries. (more…)

Search and Social Media Marketing Tips for 2014

Alex Fenton at MediaCityUKAs the course leader for a Search and Social Media Marketing CPD course at the University of Salford, MediaCityUK, I sometimes get asked for contributions to publications. I wanted to share these tips with you – I hope you enjoy them and please feel free to contribute!

1.   The right people – If you do not have expertise within your organisation, seek advice and training from reputable sources. Search and Social Media Marketing is not rocket science, but you will save a lot of time and money if you work with experienced people with a successful track record.

Seek out recommendations from customers, employers or colleagues and speak to the people that they have worked with previously to gauge how effective they have been with previous projects. (more…)

Home computer gaming from the 1980’s onwards

Magnavox 3000

Magnavox 3000

I have to doff my cap to my Dad, who, in an inspired move, bought us a TV console around about 1980. Memory and the Internet fail us as to exactly what it was, but it played about 8 games, most of which were essentially Pong. I think it was the Magnavox Odyssey 3000. We might have still had it at our house had our rabbit Toyah not chewed through the wires in the hope that they contained lettuce I suppose. Either way, this was one of the world’s first home computer games systems and it paved the way for a future entwined with computer games. (more…)