By Pulane Kelapile
A public relations officer is a face of any organisation. He or she links the organisation with the media, deals with publicity strategies and campaigns, writing press releases, and dealing with enquiries from the public. Football clubs in Botswana know the importance of having such officers in their structures, and newly promoted Black Forest joined the bandwagon.
Killer Pass website visited Black Forest public relations officer just to understand who he was and understand his road map for the Mmankgodi based side.
Killer Pass: Hi how are you Koketso?
Mmolotsi: Eish I’m fine Killer, how are you?
Killer Pass: Yeah your team is doing very well, and congratulations for that. Now let’s get back to business, who is Koketso?
Mmolotsi: Well my name is Koketso Mmolotsi from Mmankgodi village, I was born 34 years ago.
Koketso and Black Forest
Killer Pass: Now, tell us about you and Black Forest.
Mmolotsi: Black Forest has always been part of me. I have played for Black Forest from the time it was Called Magoleng long time ago registered at SERFA Region as a Defender and a Midfielder with the likes of assistant coach Reetsang Kalusha Letlole and our chairman Onkgolotse Stan Kekobilwe. I then moved to Tourism FC at Mmankgodi and helped them to gain first division promotion when Black Forest was promoted to First Division SERFA. I have also played for Roman Cosmos FC at third division to help them also promote to second division.
I came back to Black Forest on the 2012/2013 season to come as a Public Relations Officer and been on that post ever since and have had great moments.
Killer Pass: Ok, what drives or motivates you to do your job
Mmolotsi: The passion, the love for Magoleng family, the commitment that each of us from players, technical, players and supporters are showing ever since I became the PRO. As a PRO you are the link between players, management and supporters. There are always looking at you for critical information, updates whether good or bad and have to share that information on time and at the right place.
Challenges of a modern PRO
Killer Pass: Mmmm, now tell us the challenges of this post, so that others who are aspiring to become PRO can know what to expect.
Mmolotsi: Evolving with times-The same way we were doing things in 2013 is no longer viable to communicate these days a simple line of communication used to send a clear message but these days things like graphic designs help your information to be loud and clear. Staying on Top of your industry – this means as PR and Marketing I must always be on top of whatever I do. I must always be first in sharing information, updating and giving live feeds as things happen and must be there wherever events of the team are. Having the Latest Technology Skills – PR and Marketing needs a PRO to have all technology gadgets and have the technology to use them and the other challenge is always Data Bundles or WIFI wherever you are to be able to communicate easily and on time.
The amazing green army of fans?
Killer Pass: Your team supporters has taken the league by storm what the secret behind that and how do you managed to pull good crowds?
Mmolotsi: Our Team is a youth team to start with our management are all youth so with that you have to know what your supporters like and do not like.
When we were at first division we saw that Facebook groups, pages and WhatsApp groups are vital for communicating with our supporters. I started with creating a Supporters WhatsApp group in 2013 where we share ideas, update each other give feedback from Management.
The other important thing is to value our supporters. We value them to the extent that our Team manager always have his office open to them we help them to raise funds to be able to attend games, we give them feedback just that they know we appreciate and value them so much.
And the other thing is players always giving feedback to our supporters the great boost they give to them in the field of play and even our captain on all his interviews never forgets to appreciate them.
That also shows they are part of us that’s why we call each other MAGOLENG family we always stress that the team is a team by its supporters.
Had a great experience with them when we were going to Jwaneng and used the same bus with them the conversation always is positive even after losing to Jwaneng Galaxy they still comforted each other and told each other that we still got this no need to panic and that will show by Gunners game where I’m 100% sure they going to go to Lobatse in numbers and we going to shake Gunners supporters.
The 2nd round
Killer Pass: What’s the plan for the second round in terms of mobilizing supporters?
Mmolotsi: We have been working hard on December break; we never rested. We had Family Fun Day with our kids and families at Manyana Park reason being to take Manyana community on board and show them that the team is for everyone not Mmankgodi Village only.
Second round our support base is going to be bigger and better and we are going to paint whether our away games or home games green because it shows by the demand increase of our merchandise. We are trying to tap into the support of other already known teams and its working they come to us saying they have been supporting other teams but now want to be part of us and it’s a good thing to us.
We have membership for our supporters and can come register with us and be part of this family fully.
The transfer window
Killer Pass: January transfer window is open are you going to beef up your squad?
Mmolotsi: Our Technical team are assessing and monitoring our boys and will feedback to the management soon however if there can be no major changes in our team we are not intending to go in the market as our boys have shown us that they are capable of being in BTC Premiership and compete with the big teams and you can see we only left with 3 games of first round but they worked really hard came with positive results and can still see they are hungry for more success. We can only go to the market if we can have major shakeups to the team.
Killer Pass: Do you have a good working relationship with the media
Mmolotsi: The Media is working with Black Forest FC very well and thanks very much to you killer Pass for having always followed us not only in BTC Premiership but from far and we have had great working relationship and we appreciate the exposure the Media is exposing our team to the country and the whole world and we at Black forest are following and working closely with Killer Pass.
The National TV and Radios are also working perfectly well with us at Black Forest and this must be appreciated so much. We at Black forest are always available to share any news or updates you may need from us.
Killer Pass: Your last word to Black Forest players and supporters
Mmolotsi: Good luck to our players and we should all know THE SKY IS THE LIMIT. We can do it still at Magoleng Family, lets work hard together to achieve the common goal and all the individual goals and team goals will be achieved and we all will be happy.
To our Boys let’s keep working hard with that much commitment, hard work, team Spirit and the love for each other. God is watching us and he will lead us to all the good things together.
To our Technical team; We are there for you and we will give you all the support and all your needs by management and our die-hards supporters.
To Our Supporters; You all are appreciated in many ways you are our 12th player and we value the support you give to this team. The songs that you sing from first minute until the last minute we say thank you. Let’s pick where we left and keep moving forward. The tears and happiness of joy that we see each game show the love you all have this team./KP