ADPR891 Social Media Plan: University of Missouri Joins the SEC


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A social media plan for the University of Missouri as it joins the Southeastern Conference.

This plan was done as part of a PR & Social Media course at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Published in: Education, Sports
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  • This is an excellent plan. Of particular interest is the Storify, which could be pretty amazing; and your integration within and adding to existing channels. This is really tricky but you've planned it well. Do you have a suggestion on a new hashtag for this? I love your idea on the biggest fan contest. That could really take off, and drive attention and following to all the other sites. Maybe the biggest fan contest could start on Youtube... (I'm not sure I'm really digging that Youtube video idea I'm looking for something fun or crazy); maybe suggest implementing a countdown? Challenge A&M in a contest to get most followers/fans?

    Excellent work on this!
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ADPR891 Social Media Plan: University of Missouri Joins the SEC

  1. 1.                                                   University  of  Missouri  Joins  the  Southeastern  Conference:   A  Social  Media  Opportunity     Liz  Levine   ADPR891   Summer  2012     1  
  2. 2. Analysis    Background  of  the  University  of  Missouri     • The  University  of  Missouri  was  established  in  Columbia,  Missouri  in  1839.     • MU  has  8  men’s  varsity  athletic  teams  (Baseball,  Basketball,  Cross  Country,  Football,  Golf,  Swimming  &   Diving,  Track/Field,  Wrestling)     • MU  has  10  women’s  varsity  athletic  teams  (Basketball,  Cross  Country,  Golf,  Gymnastics,  Soccer,   Softball,  Swimming/Diving,  Tennis,  Track/Field,  Volleyball)     • Football  is  one  of  Missouri’s  most  popular  sports     • The  MU  football  team  played  its  first  game  on  Thanksgiving  Day  in  1890     o They  lost  28-­‐0  to  Washington  University  in  front  of  a  crowd  of  3,000  in  St.  Louis,  Missouri     • The  nickname  “Tigers”  comes  from  the  armed  guards  (called  the  “Missouri  Tigers)  who  protected   Columbia  from  Confederate  guerrillas  during  the  Civil  War     • Former  members  of  the  Big  Eight  Conference  (along  with  Colorado,  Iowa  State,  Kansas,  Kansas  State,   Nebraska,  Oklahoma  and  Oklahoma  State)     o Four  teams  from  Texas  joined  the  conference  (Baylor,  Texas,  Texas  Tech  and  Texas  A&M)  and  it   became  the  Big  12  Conference  in  1994.     • On  July  1,  2012,  Missouri  will  leave  the  Big  12  and  join  the  Southeastern  Conference       2  
  3. 3.  Background  of  the  Southeastern  Conference     • The  Southeastern  Conference  was  founded  in  1932     • The  original  13  members  were:   o University  of  Alabama   o University  of  Florida   o University  of  Georgia   o University  of  Kentucky   o University  of  Mississippi   o University  of  Tennessee   o Auburn  University   o Louisiana  State  University   o Mississippi  State  University   o Vanderbilt  University   o Sewanee  University   o Georgia  Tech   o Tulane  University     • Sewanee  left  in  1940;  Georgia  Tech  left  in  1964;  Tulane  left  in  1966     • University  of  Arkansas  joined  in  1990;  University  of  South  Carolina  joined  in  1992     • Texas  A&M  will  also  leave  the  Big  12  to  join  the  SEC  on  July  1,  2012     • The  addition  of  Missouri  and  Texas  A&M  will  bring  the  SEC  membership  to  14  schools       3  
  4. 4.  Synopsis  of  the  Situation     The  University  Missouri  is  joining  the  Southeastern  Conference.    The  university  will  no  longer  be  affiliated  with  the  Big  12  Conference.    Leaving  the  Big  12  Conference  will  cost  Missouri  more  than  $12  million,  but  the  university  feels  the  move  is  worth  the  cost.   Missouri  will  be  the  one  of  the  two  newest  members  of  the  Southeastern  Conference,  and  will  no  longer  play  its  in-­‐conference  rivals  from  the  Big  12  on  a  regular  basis.    Despite  being  further  west  than  many  teams  in  the  SEC,  Missouri  will  play  in  the  SEC  East  division.       “The  Southeastern  Conference  is  a  highly  successful,  stable,  premier  athletic   conference  that  offers  exciting  opportunities  for  the  University  of  Missouri,”  said  Chancellor   Brady  J.  Deaton.  “In  joining  the  SEC,  MU  partners  with  universities  distinguished  for  their   academic  programs  and  their  emphasis  on  student  success.  The  SEC  will  provide  our   student-­athletes  with  top  flight  competition  and  unparalleled  visibility.  We  came  to  this   decision  after  careful  consideration  of  the  long-­term  best  interests  of  our  university.    We   believe  the  Southeastern  Conference  is  an  outstanding  home  for  the  Mizzou  Tigers,  and  we   take  great  pride  in  our  association  with  this  distinguished  league.”     4  
  5. 5. University  of  Missouri’s  Current  Involvement  in  Social  Media     • Facebook  page  with  216,427  “likes”   • Pinterest:   • YouTube  Channel  with  234,447  views  and  216  subscribers     • Multiple  Twitter  accounts     o @MizzouNews  has  13,992  followers   o @Mizzou  has  10,882  followers       o @MizzouNetwork  has  3,354  followers   o @MizzouAlumni  has  7,001  followers   o @Missouribuzztap  has  5,023  followers.       • A  few  blogs:   o Blog  of  Web  Communications:   o Live  Wire  Blog   o Missouri  Alternative  Spring  Break  Blog     o Missouri  Sports  blog   o Mizzou  Rah  Sports  Blog   o Mizzou  football  blog:     5  
  6. 6. SEC’s  Involvement  in  Social  Media     • Though  not  recently  updated,  many  podcasts  are  available  at     • Facebook  page  with  257,769  “likes”     • YouTube Channel with 224,581 views and 258 subscribers     • Twitter:  @SECSportsUpdate:  70,150  followers     • Blogs about the SEC:   o’s   o   o­‐sec/             6  
  7. 7. Current  Topics     Sports  fans  and  analysts  talk  year-­‐round  about  teams  and  conferences.    There  are  many  current  social  media  discussions  about  both  the  University  of  Missouri  and  the  Southeastern  Conference.    In  fact,  there  are  far  too  many  to  list.    More  relevantly,  here  are  topics  relating  to  Missouri  joining  a  new  conference.    Trending  Topics  Pertaining  to  MU’s  Move  to  the  SEC     • Countdown  until  MU  becomes  a  member  of  the  SEC   • General  excitement  about  the  move  to  the  Southeastern  Conference   • Speculation  on  the  Tigers’  success  in  a  new  conference   • Discussion  about  who  will  be  the  newest  rival  of  the  Tigers  in  the  SEC   • The  SEC  teams  have  all  had  to  make  schedule  adjustments  to  accommodate  Missouri  and  Texas  A&M   • Will  the  SEC  Conference  change  its  logo  or  division  names  now  that  they  have  added  new  teams?   • Members  of  the  SEC  have  won  the  national  championship  in  NCAA  the  last  6  seasons.    How  will  this   affect  MU’s  reputation?  Will  they  become  more  respected  in  football?    The  SEC  East  claims  3  of  the  last   7  national  championships  in  men’s  basketball.    Will  this  help  Missouri’s  basketball  reputation?               7  
  8. 8. Current  Community/Audience    The  main  discussions  about  University  of  Missouri  joining  the  Southeastern  Conference  appear  among:     • University  of  Missouri  students   • University  of  Missouri  alumni     • Sports  media   • SEC  fans     • General  sports  fans   • The  community  of  Columbia,  Missouri.     These  discussions  appear  in  blogs,  on  Facebook,  in  Tweets,  on  YouTube,  in  sports  columns,  on  online  discussion  boards,  in  podcasts  and  on  the  Web  sites  of  the  Southeastern  Conference  and  University  of  Missouri.    While  there  do  not  appear  to  be  any  hashtags  on  Twitter  relating  to  both  the  Missouri  Tigers  and  the  SEC,  many  hashtags  relating  to  one  or  the  other  (#Mizzou,  #MUTigers,  #MU,  #SEC,  #SoutheasternConference)  often  appear  within  the  same  tweet.    The  same  keywords  frequently  appear  together  as  tags  on  blogs  and  YouTube  posts.     8  
  9. 9. Opportunity There  is  an  opportunity  to  create  awareness  of  MU’s  move  to  the  Southeastern  Conference,  educate  fans  about  the  conference  itself  and  convince  fans  that  the  move  will  be  beneficial  for  the  university.     The  university  should  implement  an  awareness  and  education  program  to  let  students,  alumni  and  fans  know  about  the  conference  change,  and  it  should  educate  constituents  about  the  SEC  while  educating  the  SEC  about  MU.    The  university  should  excite  fans  about  the  upcoming  change  of  conference  and  put  their  minds  at  rest.    Fans  want  to  be  sure  that  they  will  have  the  same  –  or  better  –  experiences  as  fans  of  a  team  in  the  Southeastern  conference.     Conferences  and  their  traditions  are  very  important  to  college  sports  fans.    Being  part  of  a  certain  conference  brings  about  a  certain  level  of  pride.    Which  conference  a  team  is  part  of  can  determine  how  the  team  is  viewed  by  the  media,  how  poll  voters  see  team  and  which  bowl  game,  if  any,  the  team  will  play  in  at  the  end  of  each  season.           9  
  10. 10. Fans  will  be  most  interested  to  find  out  more  about  in-­‐conference  opponents.    Because  the  Tigers  are  new  to  the  conference,  the  MU  teams  will  have  had  little,  if  any,  experience  playing  teams  from  the  Southeastern  Conference.    Starting  in  July,  the  Tigers  will  begin  to  play  12  new  teams  regularly.    It  makes  the  most  sense  to  implement  the  social  media  plan  focusing  on  football  because  football  is  the  most  high-­‐profile  sport  in  college,  and  because  football  will  be  one  of  the  first  sports  impacted  by  the  conference  change.                             10  
  11. 11. Social  Media  Communication  Plan  Goal   • Introduce  Missouri  to  the  SEC  and  the  SEC  to  Missouri    Objectives    Organizational  Objectives:     • Make  the  University  of  Missouri  the  more  popular  of  the  two  new  SEC  teams     • Increase  athletic-­‐event  ticket  sales  from  last  year      Social  Media  Communication  Objectives:     • Strengthen  the  relationship  Missouri  has  with  other  members  of  the  SEC   • Build  awareness  that  Missouri  is  no  longer  part  of  the  Big  12  and  is  now  in  the  SEC   • Position  Missouri  as  an  athletic  leader  in  the  Southeastern  Conference   • Improve  understanding  of  the  Tigers’  rich  athletic  history  within  online  communities  of  SEC  and  MU   stakeholders       11  
  12. 12. Social  Media  Communication  Strategies       • Build  a  dialogue  with  University  of  Missouri’s  social  media  community  to  address  concerns  about   joining  a  new  athletic  conference     • Leverage  existing  social  media  communities  to  bring  in  new  fans  for  Tiger  athletics     • Encourage  current  members  of  Tiger-­‐related  social  media  communities  to  openly  discuss  the  move  to   the  Southeastern  Conference  online     • Capitalize  on  the  popularity  of  football  by  launching  the  social  media  campaign  just  before  the  start  of   football  season               12  
  13. 13. Audiences/Communities      The  main  audiences  for  social  media  communications  will  be:     • University  of  Missouri  students     • University  of  Missouri  alumni     • Southeastern  Conference  sports  fans.                                           13  
  14. 14. Channels   • Facebook     o 10,000  more  “likes”  by  September  9,  2012   o Post  at  least  once  each  day  –  between  noon  and  8:00  p.m.   o Create  calendar  of  upcoming  athletic  events  and  tailgates  for  “Events”  page     o Create  a  “Biggest  Fan  of  MU  in  the  SEC”  Contest    Fans  will  add  pictures,  videos  and  posts  on  the  Facebook  page  to  prove  why  they  are  the   biggest  fans  of  MU  in  the  SEC    Biggest  fan  will  be  recognized  at  halftime  of  the  SEC  home  opener  game  on  September  9,   2012  against  Georgia  and  will  receive  a  University  of  Missouri  gift  pack,  including  a  hat,  t-­‐ shirt,  football  and  poster  signed  by  the  team  and  coaches     • Twitter     o 5,000  followers  for  each  new  account  by  the  end  of  2012   o Create  new  @MUTigers  account  and  consistently  tweet  at  least  5  times  each  day  (throughout  all   dayparts)   o Create  @MUTigersSEC  account      Tweet  the  day  before  and  the  day  of  every  in-­‐conference  sporting  event  to  remind  fans  of   games  for  all  sports    Provide  score  and  action  updates  during  games  and  results  after  games   • New  Twitter  accounts  are  important  because  the  existing  one,  @Missouribuzztap,  is   hard  to  find.    @MUTigers  and  @MUTigers  SEC  are  more  intuitive  and  easier  to   search  for.    The  school  should  reinvent  itself  on  Twitter  while  it  reinvents  itself  as  an   SEC  school.   o Promote  “Biggest  SEC  Tailgate”  for  the  SEC  home  opener  with  hashtag  #MUSECTailgate    Encourage  as  many  fans  as  possible  to  check  in  near  the  stadium  on  Foursquare  before  the   game  and  “shout”  the  check  ins  on  Twitter       14  
  15. 15. • Instagram     o 2,000  followers  by  the  end  of  2012   o Create  an  Instagram  account  for  @MUTigersSEC  and  link  it  to  the  Twitter  account  to  share   photos  of  fans  and  events    Post  pictures  of  Missouri  fans  tailgating  and  watching  SEC  games   • Frequency:  Post  for  all  MU  SEC  games     • Storify     o 1,500  views  by  September  9,  2012   o Create  one  Storify  page  to  show  why  and  how  MU  joined  the  SEC     • YouTube     o 500  channel  subscribers  by  end  of  2012   o Create  a  contest  for  fans  to  submit  videos  explaining  what  it  means  to  be  part  of  the  SEC    Best  video  will  win  tickets  to  the  Kentucky  at  Missouri  football  homecoming  game  on   October  27,  2012    1,200  contest  entries  by  September  9,  2012   o Upload  clips  of  all  in-­‐conference  football  games  to  University  of  Missouri’s  YouTube  channel     • WordPress     o 400  followers  by  September  9,  2012   o Create  an  official  blog  for  general  information  about  Missouri  Tigers  athletics    Create  a  section  of  the  Blog  specifically  for  SEC  Conference  competition  information    Add  sports  recap  podcasts  to  blog  page   • Frequency:  two  posts  per  week           15  
  16. 16. • Pinterest     o 500  followers  by  September  9,  2012   o Create  MU  Tigers  Pinterest  page  with  highlights  of  sports  and  tailgating  in  the  SEC    Boards  for  tailgating  pictures,  game  pictures,  tailgating  recipes,  mascot  pictures,  campus   pictures   • Frequency:  Every  day     • Google+     o 500  +1s  by  September  9,  2012   o Create  MU  Tigers  Google+  page  to  share  MU  Tigers  pages    +1  SEC-­‐related  links    Frequency:  Every  day     • Shazam     o 250  Shazam  tags  by  September  9,  2012   o Create  Shazam  tag  for  the  MU  fight  song    Picture  of  tag  should  include  the  SEC  logo    Shazam  tag  should  link  to  Twitter,  Facebook,  YouTube,  Pinterest,  Google+,  WordPress  and   an  option  to  buy  the  fight  song  as  a  ringtone     • Digg     o 500  Digg  shares  by  end  of  2012   o Create  MU  Tigers  Digg  account  to  post  stories  about  MU  in  the  SEC               16  
  17. 17. Implementation  Implementation  will  require:   • Two  new  Twitter  accounts  &  linked  Instagram   account   • Two  people  to  Tweet  from  the  new  Twitter   accounts  and  promote  SEC  Tailgate   • One  Shazam  tag   • One  person  to  add  all  athletic  events  to  “Events”   page  on  Facebook,  manage  “Biggest  Fan”  contest   and  manage  daily  posts   • One  person  to  manage  Google+  account   • Two  people  to  review  fan-­‐created  content  for   YouTube  contest   • A  local  sponsor  for  the  YouTube  contest   • One  person  to  upload  clips  of  in-­‐conference  games  to  YouTube  channel   • Two  blog  contributors   • Two  people  to  create  University  of  Missouri  sports  podcasts  to  add  to  the  blog   • Two  people  to  create  and  maintain  the  Pinterest  page     • One  person  to  manage  Digg  account  and  create  Storify  page     17  
  18. 18. • Accounts  will  all  be  managed  by  members  of  the  University  of  Missouri  Office  of  Athletics  public   relations  team    Timeline  for  Implementation:     This  plan  should  begin  before  Missouri  officially  becomes  a  member  of  the  Southeastern  Conference.    For  the  purposes  of  this  plan,  the  plan  would  have  started  as  soon  as  Missouri  made  the  announcement  in  November  2011  that  it  would  join  the  SEC.    It  should  last  through  the  end  of  football  season  –  possibly  longer.    Of  course,  social  media  monitoring  will  help  to  determine  how  long  the  awareness  campaign  should  last.    It  may  be  useful  to  continue  the  plan  through  the  end  of  the  first  basketball  season  in  the  SEC  given  the  popularity  and  recent  success  of  the  men’s  basketball  team.     Of  course,  at  a  certain  point,  the  audiences  will  all  be  aware  of  Missouri’s  move  to  the  SEC.    At  that  point,  Missouri  should  change  the  focus  of  the  campaign  message  from  Missouri  being  in  the  SEC  to  Missouri  being  the  “Best  Tigers  in  the  SEC.”    With  LSU  and  Auburn  also  having  Tigers  as  their  mascots,  Missouri  should  try  to  make  itself  stand  out.    Eventually,  the  campaign  should  focus  on  promoting  Missouri  as  an  elite  member  of  the  Southeastern  Conference,  but  it  should  be  a  gradual  development.               18  
  19. 19. How  to  Drive  Traffic   • Partnership  with  the  SEC  Digital  Network  to  promote  the  addition  of  Missouri  to  the  SEC  and  promote   the  social  media  campaign   • Create  local  television  commercial  for  the  University  of  Missouri  highlighting  the  fact  that  Missouri  is   in  the  SEC   o Include  Facebook  page  information  and  Twitter  handle  in  commercial   o Play  fight  song  in  commercial  and  include  the  Shazam  logo  in  the  commercial   • Add  Facebook  page  information,  Twitter  handle  and  hashtags  to  existing  “Proud  to  be  SEC”  billboard   • Distribute  flyers  on  campus  and  post  in  residence  halls  to  make  people  aware  of  the  social  media   channels   • Link  social  media  channels  to  each  other   • Tweet  links  and  post  links  of  Facebook  to  all  other  social  media  tools   • Announcements  during  sporting  events         19  
  20. 20. Issues/Concerns     • There  may  be  negative  comments  from  Big  12  fans  about  Missouri  leaving  the  conference   o The  university  should  avoid  mentioning  leaving  the  Big  12  Conference  and  simply  talk  about   what  lies  ahead.    There  is  no  need  to  dwell  in  the  past.     • The  university  may  not  be  respected  because  it  is  joining  the  premier  league  of  college  football,  and   many  analysts  are  concerned  MU  will  not  be  able  to  match  up  with  the  new  competition   o Assure  constituents  that  MU  is  ready  and  excited  for  the  challenges  that  lie  ahead.    The  Tigers   are  going  to  prove  they  compete  with  the  best  teams  in  college  football.                       20  
  21. 21. Assessment   • Measure  growth  in  Facebook  “likes”   • Measure  growth  in  Twitter  followers   • Measure  number  of  blog  readers   • Measure  number  of  podcast  listeners   • Measure  number  of  Pinterest  followers,  likes  and  re-­‐pins.   • Measure  number  of  YouTube  subscribers  and  channel  views   • Measure  number  of  YouTube  contest  entries   • Measure  Storify  views   • Measure  Google+  followers   • Measure  Shazam  tags   • Measure  Digg  followers   • Measure  Foursquare  check  ins  at  the  SEC  home  opener   • Measure  overall  share  of  conversation  compared  to  other  SEC  schools   o Measure  overall  share  of  conversation  compared  to  Texas  A&M   • Measure  specific  number  of  mentions  of  the  MU  Tigers  in  the  SEC  Blog   • Measure  amount  of  negative  comments  about  the  MU  Tigers  in  the  SEC   • Evaluate  tone  of  social  media  posts  about  the  MU  Tigers   • Use  Google  Analytics  and  Cision  to  monitor  the  online  conversation     21  
  22. 22. These  measurements  will  help  the  university  see  where  social  media  has  a  strong  impact  and  where  there  is  room  for  improvement.    Furthermore,  they  will  allow  the  university  to  see  immediate  feedback  from  the  audience  and  can  determine  the  overall  attitude  of  constituents  regarding  the  move  to  the  Southeastern  Conference.    Monitoring  the  tone  of  posts  will  help  the  University  of  Missouri  understand  what  stakeholders  would  like  to  see  in  the  future.       Once  MU  is  aware  of  what  provokes  action  from  the  audience,  it  will  know  how  to  adjust  the  plan  for  the  future  to  maintain  or  increase  participation,  and  which  parts  of  the  audience  to  target.    Comparing  the  share  of  conversation  and  specific  number  of  mentions  in  the  Southeastern  Conference  Blog  will  allow  MU  to  see  which  universities  in  the  Southeastern  Conference  are  most  talked  about.    Once  they  determine  which  universities  those  are,  MU  can  begin  to  research  why  those  universities  get  the  attention  they  do.    If  MU  determines  these  universities  get  positive  attention,  it  may  be  an  indicator  of  what  the  University  of  Missouri  should  focus  on  in  the  future.         Additionally,  monitoring  negative  feedback  will  allow  the  university  to  solve  existing  problems  while  working  toward  a  more  successful  future.    Without  knowing  where  there  are  problems,  there  is  no  way  to  effectively  find  solutions.         22  
  23. 23. Information  Retrieved  from:­‐history.php­‐main.html­‐lessons-­‐big-­‐12-­‐big-­‐8-­‐swc­‐football-­‐history.html!/Mizzou?rf=109281435757256!/pages/Southeastern-­‐Conference/64758072831­‐12/big-­‐12/2012-­‐missouri-­‐tigers-­‐football-­‐schedule.php                       23  
  24. 24. Image  Credits:   (page  1)   (page  2)­‐of-­‐missouri-­‐logo-­‐1/   (page  3)   (page  5)   (page  6)   (page  8)   (page  9)   (page  10)­‐FOOTBAL1.jpg   (page  11)   (page  12)    (page  13)     (page  17)   (page  19)­‐content/uploads/2012/02/20120227-­‐132910.jpg   (page  20)­‐ 1da5-­‐5d7f-­‐a8f9-­‐3c78ed0c8a5f/4ed65ebacf748.image.jpg   (page  21)     (page  22)­‐Fall/columns/sec/images/SEC-­‐logo.jpg     24