AS a way of promoting the club brand and identity, Highlanders chairman Kenneth Mhlophe has revealed that this year they will be launching the club’s official flag, anthem and mascot.
“These developments are targeted at fan engagement, increasing traffic and ultimately monetising the fan base,” said Mhophe.
Bosso chief executive officer, Nhlanhla Dube, said the club’s followers would be engaged on the pending developments.
“Since the launch will be a process, everyone has to be involved in this. We will embark on massive fan engagement and we will produce an option of possibilities with regards to the kind of an animal that we will use for our mascot. There are a lot of options that we can talk about. We can use umantengwane, ithendele (partridge) or ihlolanyama,” said Dube.
Bosso are still called Amahlolanyama after those army of beautiful black and white birds that appeared when hunters brought lots of meat to the village. The club is also fondly known as uMantengwane after a noisy ugly black bird.
“With regards to our official anthem, we have many songs that have been sung about this great institution so we will give the fans a chance to vote for their all time favourite to become our official song of praise. We will also come out with a portion of designs for our official flag,” said Dube.
The club’s chairman also mentioned that they will soon be re-launching its re-branded website with among other features, an option to register fans.
“This feature will enable the club to create a fan data base for smarter fan engagement. Currently, the club is active on social media sites, Twitter and Facebook whose long-term purpose is to channel traffic towards our website. The social media spaces have been growing fast. These platforms are an amazing set of communication tools and levers for greater fan engagement which make official club information readily available thus lessening the proliferation of rumour and false information. Sponsors and partners want to see this growth as it directly speaks to the number of club fans and followers they can reach,” said the Bosso boss.
Meanwhile, the Highlanders first team has embarked on a six-week period of preparation after thorough players’ medical examinations.
The Bulawayo giants managed to renew the contracts of Peter Mudhuwa, Ariel Sibanda, Tendai Ndlovu, Mbongeni Ndlovu, Godfrey Makaruse, Vincent Moyo, Ray Lunga, Brian Jaravaza and Charlton Siamalonga.
This was after they signed club returnee Prince Dube, Bukhosi Sibanda, Nqobizitha Masuku, Mbekezeli Sibanda, Alfred Chiname and Cleopas Kapupurika.
The squad will consist of up to 27 players and Mhlophe said only two players, a goalkeeper and a young striker were still being negotiated for.