The first two international representatives of the Everton Fans' Forum, Joe O'Reilly and Tony Sampson, have provided details of the findings of their recent canvass of overseas Blues as part of an initiative to give supporters like themselves, living outside the UK, a voice on all things Everton.
Their three-week consultation with overseas Toffees sought to get direct feedback about the issues that matter most to them, provide a focal point to feed in their opinions and better understand how they want to be involved and kept informed on key club and fan developments.
From more than 100 supporters groups either with an online presence or official affiliation nearly 500 Evertonians chose to respond to the survey representing Blues from 27 different countries across the globe and the overwhelming message was that regardless of where they're based, Evertonians want to have a say about their club. 90% said this is “important to them”.
The survey also showed the areas where overseas fans want to see greater focus, including providing continued and even greater support for supporters clubs to drive engagement and host local events, building greater visibility of the Everton brand in their international market, exploring opportunities to better connect overseas supporters and continued access to tickets to Goodison Park.
Working with Everton's Fan Engagement Team, the Fans' Forum say they are already taking some positive steps in addressing some of these issues with its affiliation and membership programmes, engagement and communication, and broadening the Blue Family campaign to reach international supporters.
To further build on this, they have shared the findings of the survey with the club and made a series of recommendations that they hope can inform and further inspire the plans Everton have been developing as well as provide some additional insight in enhancing engagement even further.
Any supporters in Europe who want more information about the survey or share their ideas with the Fans' Forum can contact Joe O'Reilly at email@example.com, or for Evertonians living in North America or anywhere else in the world, Tony Sampson at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Club's Fan Engagement Team can be contacted directly at email@example.com