Social media has become an effective tool through which to promote all types of brands – and local sports franchises are no exception. Since sports coverage in the media is geared almost exclusively towards national-level franchises, local teams generally don’t receive a great deal of coverage. Fortunately, social media staples like Facebook and Twitter have provided these smaller-scale franchises with a way to mobilize their respective fan bases and spread the word about upcoming games. Social media outlets also give these teams a way to interact with fans and respond to various queries. However, when using social media for these purposes, there are a number of rules to which you’ll need to adhere.
Don’t Get Drawn into Arguments
A shocking number of people thrive on starting arguments online. Virtually any forum or message board you visit will feature at least one poster who’s dead-set on kicking off a confrontation. Not surprisingly, social media outlets are also rife with troublemakers of this ilk. In addition to posting confrontational responses to tweets and Facebook updates, many of them won’t hesitate to outright insult your franchise. When dealing with people like this, it’s imperative that you avoid stooping to their level. Since these individuals revel in drawing people into arguments, you’ll be playing right into their hands if you take the bait. Additionally, jumping into arguments with these people is liable to make your team seem petty and immature to followers who are privy to the exchange.
Be the Picture of Politeness
A number of celebrities and public figures have a habit of inadvertently insulting fans on social media by offering glib or sarcastic responses to perfectly harmless queries. In some cases, certain fans interpret such responses as cues to insult the person who made the initial query. As the Internet has shown us, people will take virtually any excuse to demean others – particularly when they’re protected by the veil of anonymity. That being the case, it’s in the best interest of both your franchise and its fans for you to be as courteous as possible when responding to questions on social media. Even if a query seems a little silly, no one is well-served by a cutting reply – no matter how funny it sounds in your head. As Live Science’s Stephanie Pappas explains, it’s important to think before posting replies. A response you find humorous or witty may have a profoundly negative impact on the asker.
Try to Be Prompt When Responding to Questions
Being prompt in replying to fan queries will show your supporters how much they’re valued. Conversely, letting days – or weeks – pass between a question being asked and you providing an answer will make you seem inattentive and unconcerned with the asker’s input. To ensure that all queries are addressed in a timely manner, make a point of checking each of your team’s social media accounts at least once every 24 hours.
Interacting with fans on social media can be lots of fun. Providing devotees with new insight into your team and learning about how your franchise has impacted the lives of certain fans is sure to provide you with a well-earned sense of satisfaction. However, failing to follow the above-mentioned rules can reflect poorly on your team and drive fans away from your franchise.