The term ‘brand’ brings up thoughts of logos: colours and symbols. But a brand is more than this; it can be described as a ‘loyal fan base’, one to be admired, be proud of using, supporting or wearing. A brand’s fan base is the lifeblood of a business and building relationships with people fosters loyalty. As a result, loyalty has the potential to increase profits.

In today’s world, brands can produce online videos and games, mobile apps, and compelling and sharable content for social media. Combining these engagement tools with incentives and promotions can be the catalyst for loyalty. But don’t forget that online success depends on offline behavior. People love to talk online and offline about their experiences with a brand, either with their friends or on online forums with strangers. Hence a strong fan base starts with a positive offline experience that is outstanding at every touch point and true to the brand’s core values that their fan base identifies with. And please remember, a brand should always listen and even participate in the conversation with their fan base – it can only boost a brand to the stars. Plus a brand learns more about their business and related products and services through their fan base and is given insights into their competitors.

Within sporting terms, the fans are the most important part to the team because they’re the reason why the players, staff, and coaches make money. Fan base size and a sporting brand’s reach also leads to sponsorship based on the brand’s value. Not only do fans give the players confidence on match day, they are loyal during good times and bad, ensuring a steady income stream.

In this competitive industry landscape, maintaining market share and growing a brand’s footprint is imperative. It all starts with a brand’s fan base, a brand’s heart and soul.