Social Media Imperatives for Sport Public Relations

A key component of public relations is social media. Especially in today’s society, our world has become so technologically advanced that many people get their news and updates all from social media.

Depending on the source, many times the news and sports updates can be easily misconstrued through social media. In this blog post, I will discuss the role social media plays in public relations for major sports teams, and how they display their social media in the best light. I will also explore how they control their team’s image through common sports social media outlets like ESPN, Bleacher Report and many more.

Social Media Accounts for major sports teams:

After looking into different major sports teams social media accounts, I have definitely learned more about how each team’s social media really works. I investigated the types of pictures and videos they post, the way that they word the posts and the overall image the social media accounts display.

Below I have attached images of twitter accounts for major sports teams in football and basketball in the DFW area.

Dallas Cowboys Official Twitter

 

Dallas Mavericks Official Twitter

 

These images from the twitter feeds of major sports teams have great traits for well-made social media accounts. Some of these traits include:

  • Each page follows the proper color schemes of the respective teams
  • The pages provide both pictures and videos about the team and what they are up to
  • The pages offer many links to related accounts
  • Each page tweets multiple times a day, so one can easily tell the tweets are up to date
  • Spelling in the tweets is correct
  • Each page provides a recap of statistics and highlights from the most recent games
  • Photos and Videos on the page are all high quality and easy to view

I plan to carry these traits with me as I grow my career and experience in sports PR. These characteristics make each social media page appropriate, intriguing and clear.

Social Media for well-known sports companies:

ESPN and Bleacher report are two well-known sports news companies. These media channels not only have their own app that sends updates to smart phones but, they also have official twitter accounts that have a huge following.

These accounts offer play-by-plays, game statistics and photos/videos. They also send updates on any news related to any individual player.

The feature of the player updates is something that PR professionals have incredibly careful of. It is their responsibility to make sure that the players’ names are spelled correctly and that no false information about the player is given out that could taint their image.

The biggest thing I have learned through my study is that the main factor in social media is to always be cautious and proofread every post. Through research and exploration, I have learned how truly important social media is to sports public relations.

Lastly, I learned that I can apply these rules and tips to my personal social media as well.

-Haley

“Deflategate” Creates Dilema for PR Departments of The New England Patriots and NFL

One of the biggest controversies to ever strike the NFL was deflategate. Deflategate is the name for the controversy that dealt with the allegation that the New England Patriots deliberately underinflated the footballs used in the 2015 American Football Conference (AFC) game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Deflategate was centered around one of the most well-known and talented players in the league, Tom Brady. This problem in the NFL escalated so greatly that it even led to a four-game suspension for Brady.

After this controversy made its way through federal courts, Brady accepted the suspension for the first four games of the 2016 regular season. Talks continued throughout the 2016 season, which ended in a Superbowl win for the New England Patriots.

Due to this enormous controversy, the NFL ultimately changed the process in inflating and inspecting the footballs.

This dilemma was a huge issue for the New England Patriots public relations department, and required them to take some serious action. It also caused intense problems for the NFL as a whole. In order to learn more about how sports PR works, I will investigate and compare the effects on the New England Patriots vs. the NFL through a public relations standpoint.

  • The National Football League (NFL): The NFL has faced lots of backlash after deflategate because of how they handled the situation. Surrounding controversies within deflategate include the suspicions surrounding Rodger Goodell. Many people believe that Rodger Goodell and the NFL’s response to this ordeal was predetermined. These suspicions most likely are rooted from the existing widespread belief that disciplinary actions against other players in the NFL were badly mishandled.                                                                                              This situation greatly tainted Rodger Goodells image, so this is something that the PR team for the NFL had to work hard to rebuild.  They not only had to look out for Goodell, but the PR professionals also had to work to regain the trust of the public. After multiple controversies like deflategate, many people have lost trust in the league and how it works.
  • The New England Patriots: Sadly, this isn’t the first time that the patriots have been in the news for possibly cheating. The headstrong football team has developed a reputation displaying that they will do anything they can to win. Also, over the years they have faced allegations of videotaping practices and tampering with equipment from many opposing sports teams.
    Luckily, these controversies have yet to damage the patriots’ fan base or success, but it definitely has not helped with the team’s relationship with the media.
    These reputations and problems that the patriots face make the job of team’s PR department a little more difficult. The PR team constantly must strive to spin the patriots’ image in a positive light, and try to remove them from the negativity that seems to follow the team.

Below I have attached a small clip from that summarizes deflategate:

Deflategate was not only a huge issue in the NFL, but in the public relations world as well. I greatly expanded my knowledge in sports PR through learning and responding to how the PR professionals from two major organizations handled this situations.

Sources: Trendkite sports PR blog

Thanks for Reading!

-Haley

 

 

Dream Job: Public Relations for The Dallas Cowboys

One of my future career goals in public relations is to work for a major sports team in the NFL. I have been a huge football fan since I was a little girl, so working in public relations in the sports industry would be my dream job.

In order to increase my knowledge on sports PR in the NFL, I will explore and analyze how the public relations department works for one of my favorite NFL teams, the Dallas Cowboys.

I am from Plano, Texas, a suburb of Dallas, so my family and I have always been cowboys fans. Since I have such a love and interest in this team, exploring their PR department has been something I have always wanted to do.

The Dallas cowboys had a great season this year, leading to an eventful year for the PR department. From the controversy of former quarterback, Tony Romo, to the rise of new star quarterback, Dak Prescott, the PR team always had to be on top of things.

During a regular season, the cowboys PR team is hard at work everyday. From pregame to post game, there is always work to be done, especially on game days. The PR team not only covers the game itself and the events that take place before, during, and after, but they also are responsible for each player on the team.

As for the game itself, the PR team holds many responsibilities. According to the Burrelles Luce, Fresh Ideas Blog, the PR practitioners must arrive early to the stadium and check on last minute details. During the game, they will sit in the press box and listen to the audio of the game. This ensures that broadcasters are not spewing misinformation or mispronouncing players’ names.

The PR team is also responsible for being a host to the media and making sure that food is available, the Wi-Fi is working properly and that they are comfortable. When the game concludes, the team gives the players a 10-minute cool-off before opening the locker room for post-game interviews.

Along with covering the team as a whole, the PR team also has to watch the image of each individual player. If they ever make a wrong decision, the PR team is responsible for recovering and rebuilding their image in the media. To avoid this as much a possible, the PR team trains each player on how to talk to the media and portray themselves in the best light.

This year, the cowboys PR team not only had a great season to cover for the team, but they also covered the opening of the brand new Dallas Cowboys practice facility, The Star.

Photo provided by the Texas Football Stadiums Database
The Star in Frisco- Photo provided by the Texas Football Stadiums Database

 

This amazing practice facility recently opened in Frisco, TX, and will serve as the new home for the football team. In order to promote this new addition, the PR team worked hard to display information about the new facility through the media. The public relations professionals worked to not only spread the word the Dallas/Fort Worth area, but to the National Football League as a whole as well.

For more information on what it is like to be a public relations professional for the Dallas Cowboys, please visit the  Burrelles Luce, Fresh Ideas PR blog. I greatly enjoyed reflecting and sharing some on the ideas from this Sports PR blog.

-Haley

 

 

A Front Row Seat to Oklahoma Basketball Marketing Observations

As a member of the University of Oklahoma pom squad, I have had a front row seat to the marketing and public relations strategies used in multiple different sporting events at the university. I have not only had the opportunity to observe the events and activities, but I have even participated in a few of them.

The marketing promotions and activities that take place at the University of Oklahoma Men’s and Women’s basketball games stand out to me because of the variety of events that occur. Marketing is a key component of public relations, so through analyzing the marketing strategies at the women’s and men’s basketball game I will expand my knowledge on sports public relations.

What I have discovered:

Through observation and participation, I have discovered that the marketing activities at the OU men’s basketball games main purpose are to increase fan interaction and the overall morale of the audience. Some of these events include:

  • An upcoming events video: An intriguing video is played displaying the upcoming OU sporting events
  • Patriot of the game: A video and live tribute to a U.S. war veteran who is usually affiliated with the university. These tributes are always special and tend to evoke emotions throughout the audience.
  • Whataburger trivia challenge- One fan is chosen out of the crowd to answer a series of OU basketball trivia questions. This promotion is sponsored by Whataburger.
  • Baby races- Toddlers are chosen to race across the court on small toy vehicles.
  • Free throw challenges- Two fans are chosen to shoot free-throws at each basket. The fan who scores the most receives a prize.
  • Kids camera- Fun music plays as the camera pans across the crowd to put dancing kids on the Jumbo Tron.
  • Lip sync- Camera pans through the audience and selects fans to lip sync to popular songs on the Jumbo Tron.
  • Interactive traditional time outs with the OU spirit squads: The Pride of Oklahoma plays “Boomer Sooner” and “Oklahoma” ,and the spirit squads lead the crowd in yelling “Boomer” and Sooner” back and forth.

Each of these promotional activities have their own purpose that works together to improve the experience of the fans.

For example, the upcoming events video informs the crowd and the patriot of the game tugs at the heart strings of the audience. The baby races, trivia and free-throw challenges and the fan lip sync get the crowd laughing and improve the morale of the arena. Lastly, the kids camera will get the crowd to make some noise and get on their feet.

All of these strategies that are done through OU Marketing and Soonervision, always get the crowd more excited and improve the overall fan experience. This ensures that when fans leave the Lloyd Noble Center, they leave with a lasting memory of what a great time they had at an OU basketball game.

Through analyzing these events that take place at the OU basketball games, I have greatly learned why marketing is an important component of sports public relations.

In order for my readers to get a good idea of what OU basketball is like, below I have attached a highlight video from a recent game:

-Haley