Chairman’s tweets show how Vale are moving with the times

Chairman’s tweets show how Vale are moving with the times

OVF founder Rob Fielding has been impressed with Port Vale Chairman Paul Wildes’ use of social media to communicate with the fans. Fielding says it shows “how the revolution at Vale Park is rapidly gaining momentum.”

Rob Fielding writes…

These are exciting times at the football club and the adoption and clever use of social media is just one example of how the revolution at Vale Park is rapidly gaining momentum…

On Monday, as speculation about a major Port Vale signing mounted, I made a throwaway comment on an OVF news article.

A tweet (a posting on the Twitter social network) by chairman Paul Wildes had suggested that a “big signing” was going to be announced on Tuesday and the Sentinel newspaper had asked manager Micky Adams for his views.

The subsequent comments from Micky Adams seemed to downplay the possibility of a new signing on Tuesday. Adams’ comments suggested that a signing was on the way but it could be by the end of the week and not necessarily on Tuesday.

Adams’ views prompted this observation from myself that “Wildes also tweeted that the signing of Darren Purse would be announced at half-time on Saturday (it was announced after the game instead) so there could be an element of “jumping the gun” with the chairman’s tweets.”

Shortly afterwards, I received a comment from a reader pointing out that Purse’s signing was indeed announced at half-time, but it was via another tweet from Wildes not via a half-time announcement at the stadium as I’d expected.

It was a fair point and I am very happy to stand corrected.

Things have happened so quickly under the new owners that it’s sometimes difficult to keep pace. Perhaps I’d fallen into the trap of remembering Vale under previous regimes – a slow, old fashioned club somewhat behind the times. A club that often promised big things but more often than not did not deliver on them (Blue Sky’s millions, Mr Bratt and the Harlequin takeover(s) anyone?).  I’d expected a new signing to be paraded on the pitch, for a PA announcement, not another tweet from the club. Perhaps most of all, I hadn’t expected a club to make an ambitious promise and deliver on it. And now in a space of a week with the Purse and Hughes signings, the chairman has made two statements of intent and most importantly, delivered them when he said he would.

Now, step back twelve months. Just a year ago, the Chairman of Port Vale would probably never have heard of Twitter let alone be thinking of using it to benefit the club.

But just being on social media sites isn’t the answer. It’s all too easy to jump on the social media bandwagon and have little or nothing to say. But Wildes’ tweets are informative, create excitement amongst the fans (it’s no bad thing for a Chairman to drum up interest in his club) and most importantly, show him to be straightforward and trustworthy (he’s delivered on both transfer promises, after all).

These are exciting times at the football club and the adoption and clever use of social media is just one small example of how the revolution at Vale Park is rapidly gaining momentum.

Well done to Mr Wildes for moving with the times and delivering on his promises.

I look forward to his next tweets with interest…

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