MLB implements Twitter to promote upcoming season

24 Mar

Opening Day for Major League Baseball is still over a week away, but the league has been trying to get fans excited for what’s to come in 2014. One of the main focuses of the MLB’s campaign to promote the game comes via Twitter. The league’s account, @MLB, has been trying to hype its return through the usage of retweets, hashtags and pictures. One of the most popular methods the MLB uses to interact with followers is the use of retweets of official team accounts, players, analysts and even fans to promote the game. These tweets allow the MLB account to spread news and information about the league to their followers without having to come up with original material. Using retweets also allows for the promotion of other accounts that tweet about baseball. MLB has over 3.49 million followers, and the retweets allow its followers to hear more about the sport. Hashtag use allows for fans to follow certain topics that are being talked about on Twitter. For example, MLB just used the #OpeningSeries hashtag in its tweets about the opening games in Australia. Also, the account has used #SpringTraining to bring fans together with content about preseason baseball. The use of hashtags lets readers filter their timeline so they can see what they want to see. Various tweets include pictures of players that are used so readers can get closer to the game than ever before. One of the main purposes of the account is to entertain followers, and these pictures help keep fans coming back. The MLB Twitter account has to do a lot to impress its nearly three and a half million followers, but the social media staff does a great job keeping followers both informed and entertained.

 

The MLB retweets various accounts to entertain followers

The MLB retweets various accounts to entertain followers

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Can’t Contain the #Madness

24 Mar

In January, there was the Super Bowl. In February, there was the Sochi Winter Olympics. And now, we have officially reached March Madness. Seriously. It’s everywhere.

Have you been on Twitter today? Because chances are you will have seen at least a few dozen #MarchMadness, and that’s not an exaggeration. It’s true, before the madness even broke out on Thursday, there were already over 135,000 tweets using the hashtag.

With more and more people joining social media, and more and more people realizing their voices can be heard, the more and more people that are going to contribute around the hype and buzz these major sporting events generate.

However, fans are not just changing the way they talk about sports, but they are changing the way they watch sports. NCAA March Madness Live offers live streaming of the 67 games as well as social media feeds to all smartphones, tablets, laptops, and PCs.

NCAA March Madness Live App

Last year, NCAA March Madness Live reached record viewership with more than “14 million hours of live video streamed, a 168% increase.” This goes to show that fans no longer just want the game’s score, but they want to engage in the full experience by watching it on the go and joining in on the conversation.

As if the competition wasn’t fierce enough, the app also allows viewers a look at the “Madness Meter,” to see which schools on Twitter are winning the war. As you can see here, Michigan doesn’t mess around.

Madness Meter

With more records set on the field each year, it is only a wonder what records will be set off the field.

March Madness: Are the women left out?

24 Mar

Every March we find ourselves glued to our TVs in our homes or at local sports bars. We all watch in anticipation to see which number one seed will be knocked out and who the next Cinderella team of the tournament will be. For all you huge basketball fans, this is the time of the year you have been waiting for and you live to see those great storied moments. When you’re flipping through the number of games though, who are you more likely to watch? Does anyone recall what women’s game was on during the Wichita State versus Kentucky game? I played girls basketball and I am ashamed to say that I may have tuned in for a total of ten minutes during the lady longhorn game. Why you ask? Because the men’s tournament was broadcasted on three different stations and the entire first round of the women’s tournament was crammed onto one ESPN station. It’s not a secret that the men’s tournament is more popular that the women’s.  When looking on twitter yesterday during the games I found that I wasn’t the only one who noticed the lack of air time for the women’s games. If collegiate women’s basketball wants to gain popularity and viewership, why not play the tournament at a different time than the men? If the NCAA would start the women’s tournament a week earlier than the men’s tournament, they would see game attendance and viewership increase. Advertising for the women’s tournament could potentially increase because the competition for viewership wouldn’t be as stiff. I think if the NCAA and colleges enhanced their social media presence it would highly benefit the women’s game. The NCAA, traditional media and social media need to step up and help these ladies out. There’s great basketball to be seen.

 

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Social March Madness 2014

24 Mar

Almost a week into the 2014 NCAA Tournament and its impact across various social media platforms has become more than relevant. Hashtags, photos, updates, and etc. have taken over news feeds and timelines, forcing users to be a part of the madness, pun intended.

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With being one of the most monumental events in college basketball, fans have turned every game, even every relatable event to the tournament, a trending topic on almost every social media site there is. This being the case, viewers have been able to get the very latest on everything surrounded the tournament without even having to watch any of it on actual television. All of this buzz about March Madness however doesn’t come from just the fans, but also brands who are trying to exploit the tournament for their own benefits through the use of advertising, communications, and marketing. So even though March Madness is technically a basketball tournament, social media has turned it into so much more than that.

Sold Out Audience in Australia

24 Mar

Opening Day always seems to cause a buzz in the sports world year by year. This time things have changed up a bit, fans were even more excited about this year’s opening day, due to the unusual choice of setting where the first game took place between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Australia is not at all known for the game of baseball, but for Opening Day, the game which was held at Sydney Cricket Ground in Sydney Australia was completely sold out. Before the game the field was covered with a tarp because of the chance of a heavy rain, the baseball God’s were good to us baseball fans and cleared the sky just in time for the start of the pre game first pitch thrown by the Australian of the year Adam Goodes. Baseball is a huge part of American culture, and bringing the game all the way to Australia makes the local dwellers want the sport to be a apart of their culture as well. MLB commissioner and baseball fans here in the U.S. would love to see the game on every corner of the world. It is just a matter of pulling it all together. Can you imagine eating hot dogs, singing “Sweet Caroline”, and watching America’s pastime on the other side of the planet?

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Why They Call It March Madness

24 Mar

They call it March Madness instead of March mayhem, or March mania for a simple reason. Out of the 60-something or what may now be 70-something teams in the tournament, only one will be crowned champion. The fans of the rest of the teams will be utterly devastated seeing their team get ousted, no matter how early or how deep in the tournament, it all hurts the same. Not to mention the fact that no one, NCAA included, understands how the seeding of teams is done, which would explain why Baylor had a better seed than Texas. Not only do most fans have to endure these frustrations , but somewhere along the way some genius decided to create brackets for groups of fans to fill out with their terrible picks of who will win each game. Now most fans will have to face the ridicule of all their friends laughing at their bracket that will more than likely have more wrong picks than right ones. On the other hand, Quicken Loans and Warren Buffet have gained a great amount of publicity from their Billion Dollar Bracket promotion, which would have paid anyone of the first 15 million fans to sign up, with a perfect bracket, nearly that amount of a billion dollars. By the second day of the tournament, (my dreams of being a billionaire now long gone) no perfect brackets remained, and a ton of publicity had been gained. Twitter is having a tremendous impact on ratings I’m sure. Since the start of the tournament, “March Madness” and many of the individual schools/teams and even players were trending, gaining a huge amount of publicity and attention for the NCAA and the tournament itself, which I’m sure has helped increase ratings, especially at the end of these games that have been so excruciatingly close. Although you will face many disappointments and upsets in the tournament, the suspense and unpredictability is what it’s all about. That is why we will watch every year with foolish hope, and that is why they call it March Madness.

The Rick Barnes Curse

24 Mar

As a University of Texas student and future Alumni, I’ve always been able to pride myself on UT’s dominance, both academically and in the sports arena. So can somebody please tell me why we employ a head basketball coach who has never won an NCAA National Championship in basketball? We were able to recruit quite possibly the best collegiate player to have played college basketball in the past 20 years. The results after the dust faded after March Madness? A loss after the second round.

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One of the best ways to tell the coaching ability of an individual is to pay attention to how well their team performs coming out of a timeout. If one watches the UT basketball team under this lens, one will consistently notice the lack of execution and dedication that is present on almost every out-of-bounds play. Another element one can use to determine the quality of a new coach is the team’s performance in late-game situations. Once again, if one trains a studious eye on the UT team on such occasions, one will notice the chaos and an ability to run a single successful play under such stressful conditions the majority of the time.

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All in all, it befuddles me as to why we go out and pay $6 million dollars a year to recruit a solid football coach when it is quite clear that our basketball coach’s only prominent attribute is his clear ineptitude in running a basketball organization.