Posts Tagged phoenix suns

Digital Sport Summit: Nick Marvin, Alana Fisher, Panel Discussion

Posted by Laura on Monday, 12 July, 2010

Alana Fisher; Manager, Digital and Social Media (FIFA World Cup Bid), Football Federation Australia
This was another one of those presentations that I really found insightful as it explained how an Australian sport organization handled it. I was also able to contrast it with two of the state bodies that I’ve some familiarity with from having talked to their W-League representatives. There were some numbers that were really impressive but then put into the context of membership appeared less so. This doesn’t appear to a problem unique to the FFA though as an AFL club representative said that when you looked at the number of people who fan/like the team and then hide them from their feed, it can be shockingly high. I just didn’t take that many notes for this session as some of the numbers were a rehash.

  • COI : Cost of Inactivity.
  • You need a community manager. Community managers deal with content and moderation.
  • They have over 160,000 people supporting their World Cup bid fan page.
  • They have around 100,000 fans for the Socceroos on Facebook.
  • They have a policy similar to that of Essendon regarding moderation.
  • A good post has 250 comments.
  • The coach decided to not allow players to use social media during the World Cup. FIFA also has their own guidelines for social media usage by players.

Nick Marvin; Chief Executive Officer, Perth Wildcats

I wasn’t expecting to take as many notes during this presentation as I did. The organization seems very on the ball with what they are doing. I really enjoyed this presentation.

  • Marvin is not a sport guy. It is not his background.
  • He has a sporting model based on the business model:

Top of triangle:
Bottom of triangle.

  • Winning isn’t everything. Engagement and tribal belonging are more important.
  • Converting fans into paying customers: Specia deals on Twitter, discount codes. Target Perth Wildcat fans using e-mail.
  • 51% of Facebook fans are likely to buy. 67% of Twitter followers are likely to buy.
  • 35% of women are looking for deals online.
  • CRM to SCRM: Need to move that way.
  • Broad traditional media campaign is important to run but it is important to run that parallel to a social media and e-mail strategy.
  • Going through social media, it allows:

1) Real time,

2) Direct/No intermediaries,

3) More authentic,

4) Less noise,

5) More frequent, and

6) Appropriate length.

  • Social media allows real time feedback.
  • The Perth Wildcats players sign a contract with the team for ethical behavior and community work.
  • You need to monitor your brand.
  • BackType and Social Mentions are two tools to help you monitor your brand.
  • The Wildcats hire for character first. Character helps to build a brand.
  • The Perth Wildcats use social media to monitor staff welfare. One person who the CEO saw tweet about feeling ill he talked to and suggested they go home if they are not feeling well.

Panel discussion: Nick Marvin, Jonathan Simpson, Jeramie McPeek, Alana Fisher

This was interesting but not as much interaction between panelists as there could be. It was at times more of a dialog with the audience. Still, lots of interesting things to learn from the panel.

  • The Wildcats have increased their ticket prices 35% just to decrease the demand.
  • The AFL is watching the NBA is doing and checking their own policies for online broadcasts as it relates to radio/audio.
  • Steve Nash does his charity work quietly, without broadcasting it.
  • Essendon has the best merchandising sales in the AFL. Essendon has a good situation as many advertisers approach them directly to cut their own deals, unlike other clubs who are hamstrung by the Telstra deal.
  • Essendon encourages players not to look at comments. The club has talked with players about managing Facebook, and educating players in how to deal with social media.
  • The Suns get in contact with Twitter people when people impersonate players and management.
  • The AFLPA is working on snuffing out fake accounts on Facebook as they can be problematic.
  • The Perth Wildcats CEO sat down and talked to a player who was slagged in the blogosphere.

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Digital Sport Summit: Ed Wyatt and Jeramie McPeek

Posted by Laura on Saturday, 10 July, 2010

These are my notes from the first two presentations.

Ed Wyatt; Journalist, SEN

Ed Wyatt was the first speaker. There were a couple of things I thought were worth noting.

  • Twenty years ago, the world was not digital but tape and typewriter. (We’ve come a long way in the past 20 years.)
  • Ed first got involved on Twitter about a year ago in order to help develop a digital media strategy for the South Dragons of the NBL. When the team folded, he changed the name of the account and took the followers with him.
  • The NBL digital platform limited some of the options available to the South Dragons. This included doing things like podcasts. The platform wasn’t flexible enough for their experimenting.He also showed a video. While I found his talk interesting, I was less impressed with the video as I had seen it, or a variant of it, before. These conferences have people with different skill sets so getting information that you already have isn’t unexpected. It just has its moments of annoying.

    Jeramie McPeek; Vice-President of Digital Operations, Phoenix Suns
    I probably took more notes for this speaker than any other because he gave a lot of specific examples of things that the team had done. It wasn’t an Australian speaker but he was able to talk about Australian fans of his team. His team’s history might also be interesting to contrast against Australian clubs.

  • 20 years ago, there was no e-mail. People used memos through inter office mail. They also picked up the phone to call some one.
  • In January 1999, the NBA sent around a memo that said teams have to have a website. The original websites were outsourced. In 200, website management was brought back in house. In 2008, the NBA website was again outsourced to Turner Television, who had taken control of Teams still had control over their own sites.
  • TV Companion has helped improve during game website traffic for the Suns. It has also helped increase overall impressions and helped sponsors.
  • The NBA, through Turner Sports, has been good with mobile apps.
  • The Phoenix Suns are probably the strongest of all teams in the NBA when it comes to video. They were the first to include video on their site in 1997. They were the first to stream a press conference live on their site in 2004. They held the first talk show for their team in 2004. Fans find the behind the scenes video content useful. The club works to provide unprecedented access that that the press does not have.
  • The Suns had initial fears of putting content on other sites like YouTube. Originally they put content on MySpace and YouTube. In the fall of 2008, the club created their own social network, Planet Organge. The goal was to keep the fan community in house. One of the early purposes of social media was to drive traffic to in house sites.
  • Phoenix Suns fans from New Zealand and Australia met on the Suns network and did a ten game road trip to watch games at different locations, with the final game being one at home for the Suns. The team loved this and introduced the AU/NZ fans to the gorilla, the team and introduced them at a game.
  • In the past 18 months, traffic has been down to Planet Orange. This is possibly because the audience has shifted to Facebook.
  • The Shaq Effect on Twitter: November 2008 was when he got on. The Suns quickly followed suit. They use TwitPic to upload pictures. Fans love this type of inside access. The team also gives away tickets and other content on Twitter. They have used Twitter apps like TwitDraw to hold contests.
  • Interaction is key to the Phoenix Suns strategy. Social media is not a one way street. The team does random of “orange” where they give away things to their followers. Teams follow strategy is to follow people who say positive things about them.
  • The Suns have a Twitter roster: 8 players, 30 front office people, head coach, and assistant coach. They are ambassadors. The goal is to use these ambassadors to help build the brand. 150 total people outside the players work for the team and they are trying to get more on Twitter.
  • Players have not been recruited much to get on Twitter. Rather they got on it themselves in response to what they saw others doing. Players are also big users of text messaging.
  • Jared Pudley is a player who really does social media. He is on Twitter and uploads videos that appear on his stream. He does 10 second clips that give additional behind the scenes insight that fans like.
  • The NBA is up to 2 million followers on Twitter.
  • The Phoenix Suns took over the fan page on Facebook as originally it was run by a fan. They did this because they didn’t feel like they had a choice as they wanted to provide the best content for their fans. They gave the fan a lot of free stuff in exchange for the page. Unlike some teams, they did not pay the fan to run it for them. There was no drama involved in taking it over.
  • The Suns use Facebook like they use Twitter. They update less on Facebook because there is a different culture. They also find that they get more negative comments on Facebook than they do on Twitter. The Suns try not to moderate Facebook that much: If fans are respectful and negative, the comment can stay. If it is profane, overly personal and disrespectful, the comment will be deleted.
  • How do you measure ROI? The Suns are still not sure.
  • The Suns created their own Facebook application.
  • In January 2008, the Suns had the first Tweetup in the NBA. 100 people showed up. 250 people showed up to the second one, this when it had a higher price point for tickets.
  • Facebook night had 300 people show up to it.
  • All social media events are sponsored, which increases revenue streams for the Suns.
  • Teams are trying to figure out how to use Foursquare and Gowalla. The New Jersey Nets did a promotion with Gowalla. The Suns don’t have as many checkins as the MCG.
  • What’s next? The Suns do not know.
  • The Suns are the only team to have an analytics coordinator. The team also has a DB and e-mail manager.
  • The teams use demographics from social media sites when talking to sponsors.
  • Player use of intellectual property has been changing over the years. The NBA has been trying to help players more.
  • The Suns do not manager players usage of social media. There are guidelines in the NBA for players and teams like how many minutes before and after a game you cannot use social media. Individual teams also have their own guidelines. The Suns rules are based on common sense.I found this talk interesting, especially when contrasted to what I know of the rules and policies for player usage for the Socceroos, Canberra Raiders, Canberra United and Melbourne Victory. It was also interesting to hear how their usage of social media differed from these teams.
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