Much whooping and suchlike at Crowd HQ, as we picked up the prize for best paper at ESOMAR's global conference in Paris, for our exploration of music fandom with Twitter...

The judges recognised ‘Future Fan’ as a piece of work that is as intelligent as it is colourful, combining cultural analysis with interviews (experts and consumers), case study evaluation, ethnography, quant and a fast paced What If session (wherein creatives and strategists were tasked with imagining how big events in music’s history would have played out differently had social media existed then).

We identified three ages of fandom, looking at the commonalities and differences in each, including in how the media has reported them and interest shown by brands. We highlighted how community dynamics have become more complex and how the relationship between fan and fan object (ie the band or artist) has changed. Next to a broadcast-quality documentary film and punchy headline findings (‘the tweet is the new autograph’) the work also offers brands a set of strategic and tactical guidelines for how to engage with fans.

Particularly massive well dones to all involved! And huge thanks, of course, to Twitter!