As of January 2017, Facebook is the most popular social media platform with 1.6 billion users. Well known social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat has a combined total of 1.2 billion active users.
Sports fans use these platforms to engage in conversations with other fans or their favourite club and check for live updates on matches and latest news. This is the perfect opportunity for sports marketers to use real time marketing to interact with sports fans.
Here are some tips on how sports marketers can use social media to engage with sports fans effectively.
Using the right platform for the target audience
There are many platforms sports marketers can choose from, but different fans use different social media platforms. The demographic of the fans vary throughout different platforms, and sports marketers should do their own background research to find out which platforms would suit the target audience.
For example, using Pinterest and Tumblr as platforms to attract and engage with female fans would make sense as they are used predominantly by female. The main purpose of using social media platforms is to engage with the fans and by carefully considering what resources the company should put into which platform will help a lot.
Updating new content and staying up to date
Unexpected events that happen during a game can spread on social media like wildfire. This gives sports marketers to use that as leverage when promoting their products. Sports marketers can also use this events to engage with fans, and build relationships through polls and discussions on social media websites.
Hashtags can be an ally if used properly
Creating hashtags that are relevant to the event will certainly help sports marketers to engage with fans. This has to be done before any events/games to build up towards the event/game. Sports fan who use the hashtags would write about relevant comments, and it would also be easier for people managing the accounts to respond and engage in conversation with those who use the hashtags.
Social media websites such as Twitter allows users to see trending topics on their platforms and if these hashtags go viral, it would reach out to a larger audience. The hashtags can also be used for upcoming competitions or giveaways to attract these fans as well.
Collecting feedback and solving problems
People in general write about almost everything on social media. This gives sports marketers a chance to understand the problems their customers face when using their products and how they can do better.
They can reply to customers who are not happy with the products or services given by the company just by searching the company’s name on social media. Another way to collect feedback from fans is by using tools such as polls on social media accounts.
This will make fans feel like their feedback is important to the company which will improve the relationship with fans and the company.
Using players as leverage
This depends on the amount of resources the company has, as athletes would most likely not do this for free. Usually, big brands like Adidas and Nike would use these athletes as leverage when they market these products. Adidas recently released the new Predator 18 boots and used famous footballers such as Paul Pogba and Mesut Özil in their advertisement to promote it.
Over 2 million people watched the advertisement in a week. To see the advertisement that featured Paul Pogba, click here.
Sports fans are constantly on social media keeping up to date with their favourite teams, especially during games and tournaments. Social media is the perfect play sports marketers can use to engage with fans and reach out to the larger audience.