Before I dive in, a bit of forewarning: this has been written at the peak of the off-season and I’m missing hockey! Secondly, as a big Belfast Giants fan, I may (probably will) show a little favouritism for the Teal Army.
It might sound a bit contrived to say that I think there is a tonne of PR and social media inspiration to be found from a sports team in any field (or rink). Of course they’re going to get great social media engagement, media coverage, create fun and imaginative content; they’re pushing at an open door with thousands of dedicated fans desperate for the latest news and team updates.
Just because they’re pushing at an open door though, doesn’t mean we can’t find inspiration from them – in this instance, ice hockey in the UK. So stick with me and keep on reading…
What PR lessons can we learn from the ice hockey?
Engage on social media
There are so many great examples of brands using social media – whether it’s everyone’s favourite, Innocent Drinks, or the slick, professional GE. There’s inspiration to found left, right and centre – and for me that includes with the Giants too.
The Giants share content that their fans care about – whether that’s game updates, news of the latest podcast, player announcements or even just things that make people laugh (like this tweet, joking with American ice hockey team Florida Everblades about NHL great Jaromir Jagr). It’s something all brands can take on board:
keep social media social, not overtly promotional;
engage and converse with your followers and others,
and share content that adds value to your audience.
Find the right angle
The average attendance at EIHL games last season was 2,842. For the Giants alone attendance averaged at 4,603. That’s not a small number and ice hockey is growing in popularity in the UK.
Despite these numbers, there traditionally hasn’t been a lot of media attention into the sport. Recent achievements – and an eye for a great PR angle – have really helped to change that.
An English graduate from the University of Exeter, Louise has worked for PR agencies in London and Leeds, with in-house marketing roles at Merlin Entertainments and Care.com.
Loving the challenge that comes with spanning both digital and more traditional marketing channels, Louise has a CAM Diploma in Marketing Communications and is an Associate of the CIM.
An avid ice hockey and football fan, Louise spends many of her weekends supporting her teal and green teams. In the off-season, you’ll find her shaking off those match day nerves with yoga and outdoor bootcamp classes!
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