At the 49ers State of the Franchise on Monday night, Chief Operating Officer Andy Dolich used the forum to formally introduce the team's newly created ticket sales and service staff to the fans.
"We had the event and we wanted to continue the momentum that the team created because ultimately this is all about the team," said Dolich. "We wanted to show the season ticket holders who were there Monday night that along with the team that they root for, cheer for and jump up and down for, this team of ticket sales and service would be there for them."
The staff is headed by the Director of Ticket Sales and Service, Jamie Brandt, who joined the 49ers before the start of the 2008 season. The recently assembled 11 person staff, which consists of a Manager of Ticket Sales, Manager of Ticket Service and eight account executives, joins five members of the ticket operations department who were already in place.
"The role of my department in ticket sales and service is two fold," said Brandt. "From a new sales perspective, we are charged with the responsibility of continuing to build the 49ers fan base, but most importantly, from a service standpoint our responsibility is to provide the highest level of customer service and support to our most loyal group of fans, our season ticket holders."
Brandt also stressed the necessity for creating such a department in order to keep up with a changing economic climate and increasingly competitive pricing in the sports industry.
"There are some teams that still exist today without aggressive ticket sales and service staffs, very few of them, and the 49ers were one of those teams for a long time," said Brandt. "The general understanding now within the industry is this type of staff is a necessary resource in whatever climate exists. You always have to be growing your fan base, and at the same time holding onto those fans that are already supporting you."
The service provided to the fans is not a task assigned to just the new sales and service staff, but is a shared responsibility of ticket operations, stadium operations, concessions, merchandise, ticket takers and ushers. In fact, many of the members of these groups will be heading to Disneyland at the end of next week in order to receive training from the service staff at the Magic Kingdom. According to Dolich, it's important to learn from "the best of the best" in order to best serve the fans coming to Candlestick Park.
"Can we wave a magic wand and make Candlestick perfect or state of the art overnight?" asked Dolich. "No. But if you develop more of a soul of the ballpark, which really comes through the people, then I think we're moving in the right direction."
The ticket sales and service staff has just begun contacting season ticket holders, introducing themselves and laying out the goals of the program, but Brandt says the initial reaction has been positive.
"We want to provide the best possible service for our season ticket holders so they continue to find value in their experience regardless of team performance," said Brandt. "We want the relationship to extend well beyond the playing field or season ticket invoice and we're at the earliest stages of developing that culture here. It's been going well so far, but we certainly have a long way to go."
Call (415) GO-49ERS. The ticket sales and service department can also be reached at Candlestick Park during normal business hours.