Hibs are on course to smash the 10,000 season-ticket target set by chief executive Leeann Dempster only eight days ago.
Urging fans to help give the Easter Road club the “best possible chance” of winning the Championship in the coming season and with it promotion to the top flight, Dempster revealed almost 8000 had been sold, 1000 of them new purchases but with 2000 existing holders still to renew.
Since then, sales have been highly promising, the number sold steadily rising to tip the 9000 barrier at the close of play yesterday, with club officials increasingly confident Dempster’s challenge will be met.
That, Hibs’ head of marketing and communications Greig Mailer revealed, would represent a “very healthy increase” on the numbers sold this time last year. He said: “We went into last season with around 7500 season-ticket holders, although that rose to around 8500 as sales continued after we’d got under way and then half-season tickets kicked in at the turn of the year.
“We set the 10,000 sales target based on comparing sales like-for-like on last year, but also taking into account the number of season-ticket holders still to renew. There are always some who, for a variety of reasons, can’t do so, they’ve perhaps moved away or taken up a different job, for example. But we are pretty confident that if we continue on with the momentum we have built up over the early part of the season and push on with renewals we’ll hit that 10,000 target.”
Mailer believes a number of factors have helped fuel the increase. These include fans motivated by the sale of Scottish Cup final tickets, the historic victory against Rangers which ended Hibs’ 114-year wait to lift the trophy and the stunning scenes the following day as 150,000 turned out on the streets of Edinburgh for the victory parade, followed by the coup in persuading Neil Lennon to succeed head coach Alan Stubbs following his surprise move to Rotherham.
He said: “There’s been a combination of things, but we’ve also been working on our marketing, tweaking some of the things we’ve done in the past and our ‘Life with Hibs’ campaign, all of these factors.”
And Mailer predicted sales will continue their upward trajectory as the beginning of the new season approaches with league fixtures being released on Friday swiftly followed by the Europa League draw on Monday.
He said: “I’m sure it will continue to build. There will be fans waiting until after their holidays or until just before the start of the season so we’ll see another spike in sales then.
“We are in good shape, well ahead on where we were this time last year, but we want to motor on towards that 10,000 mark with fans actively getting behind the challenge by encouraging family, friends and other supporters to get back along to Easter Road.”