This is an excerpt from Managing Sport Events 2nd Edition With Web Resource by T. Christopher Greenwell,Leigh Ann Danzey-Bussell & David Shonk.
Successful sporting events embrace social media to connect with customers and promote events. Social media allow organizations to bypass traditional media and communicate directly with consumers before, during, and after events. Social media also allow events to engage their fanbase and develop personal connections with their consumers.
- Have a strategy: It may seem easy to just post on various platforms, but good social media campaigns are well thought out and planned. Be specific about what you want to accomplish.
- Create content that aligns with your strategy: What you say and how you say it should align with your overall strategy.
- Understand your audience and the platforms they use: Are your target consumers using Facebook? Twitter? Snapchat? Use the platforms that best align with your target consumers.
- Create unique content for each platform: Each platform has its own advantages and disadvantages.
- Listen to your audience: By following your audience, you can learn how you are being perceived and identify issues your consumers may be having.
- Engage with the audience: By responding to your audience, you can build relationships and show your customers that they are a priority.
- Research your competition: It is important to understand what they are doing and identify tactics you could be using.
- Measure what is important: Are you trying to reach new consumers? Build loyalty? Drive people to your website? Generate sales? Effective measurement allows you to adjust and adapt your strategy.
- Convert social media engagement into sales: Build in offers and incentives to drive consumers to action. Don't settle for merely reaching consumers; identify opportunities to generate leads, acquire new customers, and increase customer loyalty.
The following are a few examples of how social media can be used to promote events.
- ONE Championship, an Asian martial arts promotion, boasts a global Facebook fanbase of over 7 million, allowing the organization to reach consumers and promote their events in more than 130 countries (Mazique 2018).
- The National Basketball Association uses Snapchat to create exclusive 3- to 5-minute shows revealing what goes on behind the scenes. The platform allows them to create content appealing to their younger consumers (Wagner 2017).
- The National Hockey League and NBC Sports partnered to create a Snapchat lens that added a playoff beard (a hockey playoff tradition) and an animated Stanley Cup to their photos. The goal was to market the playoffs by creating shareable content that would keep fans engaged (Perez 2017).
- Wimbledon uploads content to 10 different social media sites (they reached 157 million people on Facebook alone in 2017) in order to make their event more accessible and immersive to a younger, tech-savvy audience (Hartnett 2017).