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Social Media for College Athletics


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Sharon Goldmacher, president of Communications 21 was in Charlotte, North Carolina speaking at the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Annual Spring Meeting Assembly. She addressed the conference sports information directors about social media for college athletics.

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Social Media for College Athletics

  1. 1. Social Media and College Athletics May 13, 2104
  2. 2. Socialnomics 2014
  3. 3. Social Media and College Athletics • As a member of the CIAA, and ultimately the NCAA, your institutions are responsible for the actions of its representatives of athletic interests • The NCAA definition of a representative includes, but is not limited to boosters, alumni, faculty, staff and fans • NCAA violations – whether intentional or not – can jeopardize the eligibility of a student-athlete, a prospective student-athlete and/or compliance with the NCAA and CIAA rules and regulations
  4. 4. Social Media and Athletics - Questions • How much time do you spend training S-As on social media use? Coaches? • How much time do you spend monitoring? – Do you use monitoring software? • Do you have a social media policy? • Do you outline use of social media in the student athlete code of conduct?
  5. 5. Cosida Social Media Survey, 2013 Of the responding schools… • Over half (56%) do not offer social media training for student-athletes • A little less than six percent have teams that are not allowed to use social media • The majority have some kind of social media monitoring in place for student-athletes • Only 33 percent have a social media policy for student-athletes • The vast majority(77%) of schools do not offer social media training for coaches • Over 90 percent of respondents do not use student-athletes’ Twitter handles in releases • Over 50 percent have had to remove a social media post from a coach or student-athlete in the last 12 months – 11 percent had done it 10 or more times. (17% of schools taking the survey were DII)
  6. 6. Social Media Use by Student Athletes: 2014 Survey Results…the iAthlete • 78% of student-athletes are using Twitter, up from 72% one year ago • 78% of student-athletes are using Instagram, up from 65% a year ago • 94% are on Facebook, but 85% use it less than they did one year ago • 85% have a Snapchat account, up from 53% last year • 17% have used social media to network for a job or internship • Twitter is the most popular public platform for student-athletes, but also the platform where most have posted something inappropriate • 38% spend more than 1 hour per day on social media • 40% have had no social media education or training. This is down from 51% last year A breakdown of where the student-athletes came from: • 64% DI • 13% DII • 9% DIII • 14% NAIA - 500 responses
  7. 7. The iAthlete • Twitter: 78% have a Twitter account 35% check it 5 times or less per day without tweeting 37% check it more than 10 times per day 87% tweet 5 times or less per day 76% have between 100 and 500 followers 11% have more than 500 followers 67% have a public account 7% have shared personal info on Twitter 18% have tweeted something inappropriate (drugs, alcohol, sexual, racial, profanity, etc.) 6% have received hateful/critical tweets from fans, 72% of them responded • Facebook: 94% have Facebook 85% use it less today than they did a year ago 77% check it less than 5 times per day w/out posting 99% post less than 5 times per day 40% have between 100-500 friends on FB 58% have more than 500 friends 9% have posted something inappropriate (profanity, alcohol, drugs, sexual, racial, violence, etc.) 91% utilize the privacy settings on Facebook • Instagram: 78% have an Instagram account 63% have a private account 36% check it between 5-10 times per day w/out posting 32% check it more than 10 times per day 98% post less than 5 times per day 5% have posted something inappropriate (drugs, nudity, alcohol, racial, violence, etc.) • Snapchat: 85% have a Snapchat account 44% send less than 5 snaps per day 24% send more than 10 per day 10% have sent an inappropriate snap (profanity, nudity, drugs, etc.) 5% have sent snaps to a stranger 49% have received snaps from a stranger
  8. 8. Social Media – Player Gaffes • “How the eff has the chinese trampoline guy not thrown up his fried rice doing all those flips in a row #10minutes” – academic all-star student-athlete (posted during the Olympics) • "It's tough knowing that everything you do is watched pretty closely because I'm doing the same stuff I've always done. It's just now people actually care what I do.” – After Johnny Manziel posted a pic flashing cash in 2013 • Cardale Jones, a third-string quarterback at Ohio State University, tweeted "Why should we have to go to class if we came here to play FOOTBALL, we ain't come to play SCHOOL classes are POINTLESS" – Once media organizations noticed and started to write about the tweet, it was removed, as was the entire Twitter account of Jones. The university suspended Jones for one game as a result of the tweet. Inside Higher Ed -
  9. 9. Social Media – The Bad
  10. 10. Social Media – The Bad Fans • “Twitter is essentially a 24/7 opposing student section.” - Tom Izzo • “Some guys can't handle the audacity that some fans have, because they can say things, but they know we're not going to say anything back because we have something to lose and they don't.” - Dion Bailey, USC safety • Student-athletes deal with critical tweets in one or more of the following ways: 1. Ignoring it; 2. Using it as motivation; 3. Blocking users sending nasty tweets; or 4. Responding to critics or tweeting a general response about working harder (or "subtweeting" – not directly responding to a Twitter user but responding to the subject matter in general). - Assistant professors Blair Browning, Baylor and Jimmy Sanderson, Clemson • "Though hate mail has always been around, it was a lot harder to get it to people in the past. Now with the immediacy of Twitter, it's immediately in front of their eyeballs…. People spew some pretty vitriolic things to these players.“ – Blair Browning
  11. 11. Social Media – The Answer • Educate instead of simply being watchdogs • Meet with teams individually • Include tips and training in the S-A code of conduct • Bring in outside help • Follow their S-As and look for teachable moments – Deal with infractions on a case-by-case basis Jorge Araujo
  12. 12. Dos and Don’ts 1. Every day is a job interview. Dress/act like the job you want, not the job you have. 2. Twitter/social media is a telephone, not a megaphone. 3. Take pride in who/what you represent. 4. Mom Rule - If you can’t say it front of your mother (and coach), then don’t say it. 5. Use common sense – don’t post in an emotional state. Cosida 2013 presentation
  13. 13. Dos and Don’ts 6. Don’t engage in Twitter arguments. No one wins. 7. Locker room talk should stay there. 8. Thank your teammates and fans every day. 9. Think before you send - never criticize an opposing team, referee, coach or teammate. 10.Have fun.
  14. 14. Social Media Reminders for S-As • Keep in mind 1. Nothing is truly private…ever 2. If you retweet (or share), you own it 3. Personal branding: Every tweet, post, pic…reflects who you are  “Freedom of speech does not equal freedom from consequences,” - David Petroff, director of athletic communications at Edgewood College • What to post 1. Thank - fans, teammates and family 2. Sportsmanship! Send positive messages about peers in other sports or activities at school 3. Share news and humor – it’s ok to have fun, join conversations and share things of interest 4. Engage in discussion with those you admire – it’s easier than ever 5. Live your life, don’t tweet your life.
  15. 15. Social Media Graph by Institution
  16. 16. Social Media Graph - Conference
  17. 17. Best and Worst Times to Post, Pin and Tweet
  18. 18. Best Time
  19. 19. Peak Time
  20. 20. Worst Time
  21. 21. What’s your plan for what’s next?
  22. 22. Who Cares? “ released a brutally honest ad for its new app, which it hopes will serve as an online outlet for opinions. The millions of preloaded topics range from politics to music preferences, which are available for users to rate and comment on — sans social media. Those user opinions are then recorded and turned into distribution graphs.” - Mashable
  23. 23. ANALYTICS
  24. 24. Monthly Reporting • Website stats are measured month to month or year over year • Provide social media insights and sentiment of conversations – Most popular posts and tweets highlighted • Media coverage is measured with number of placements and readership • Proactive suggestions to improve results
  25. 25. Clip Report • Track media mentions • Provide visitors, readership and ad equivalency • Connect media coverage to online traffic
  26. 26. About c21 • Full-service marketing PR and interactive firm • Remarkable Service, Real Results since 1992 • National and local clients • Industries represented include sports, food & beverage, real estate, technology • Managed and marketing two NCAA Final Fours – 2007 and 2013 • Award-winning projects and campaigns
  27. 27. communications 21 404.814.1330 Sharon Goldmacher @golfergal21