Naturally, the club knows about this. And this year, it's showing it. Literally.
After incorporating fans into its inaugural season ad campaign, Portland this year went one step further, shooting video profiles of select season-ticket holders for its "We Are The Rose City" series. And these are no "why we love the Timbers" clips; instead, a film crew visits fans in their places of business, and gets to know these diverse people beyond their soccer love.
For instance, insurance agent Jeannine Murrell loves opera and the symphony almost as much as her Timbers. Randy Bland runs an outdoor store within kicking distance of Portland's Jeld-Wen Field. And Chip Setzer? He's a lumber trader. Of course.
According to Cory Dolich, Timbers vice president of marketing, these clips were supposed to live just on the team's video board at home games. But they expanded to the Web and the club's weekly TV show, with a new one produced for each home game.
That means next is the seventh, ahead of the Sunday match with rival Seattle Sounders FC. And although the fictional Portland Mayor isn't a part of the campaign (yet), "We Are The Rose City" shows quite the special side of one of North America's most dedicated supporters groups.
"We have an amazing fan base that creates such a tremendous in-game experience," Dolich said via email. "[The series is] about showcasing that, at its core; showcasing the authenticity of Timbers fans and the faces that make up our community."
Now on to the clips:
James Cosper, fishmonger
Jeannine Murrell, insurance agent
Rob Murdock, vice president/GM of direct at Nautilus, Inc.
Donovan Culley, lighting technician
Randy Bland, store manager, Rack Attack
Chip Setzer, lumber trader