Published in the January 22, 2013 issue of The Edmonton Sun.
Linda’s social media column can be found every Tuesday in the Edmonton Sun.
Edmonton Oilers dominating social media
The Edmonton Oilers are back!
The team played their first game of the NHL season on Sunday and holds their home-opener Tuesday, so in the spirit of the season I spoke with the Oilers’ social media community manager Ryan Frankson to get a better idea of just how important social media is for the team.
The answer? Extremely.
“The big thing is allowing fans to feel even more connected,” Frankson tells me.
“Social media is a great way for them to feel as close to the team as possible.”
The Oilers have hundreds of thousands of fans between its two big social networking platforms – Twitter and Facebook.
Social media became a big focus for the team in 2011, when an entire department dedicated to Oilers social media efforts was created.
Frankson was one of four people working to interact and engage with fans through different social networks. The team is now made up of two – with Frankson doing most of the social posts.
“It’s got to be all about interacting with our fans, feeding their craving for all things Oilers. It’s no secret we have some of, if not the most passionate fans across the league,” he says.
“They have a definite hunger and need for a wide assortment and steady stream of Oilers content to defeat that hunger, that’s kind of our main goal.”
If you’re an Oilers fan and you’re on Twitter, that’s a huge bonus for you. You’re getting breaking news on that platform first, behind-the-scenes photos and videos, live game coverage and in-game contesting exclusively through Twitter.
Last week during open practices, fans got a chance to win signed Oilers gear just by tweeting their seat number and an answer to a trivia question.
On Jan. 13, word of the Oilers impromptu, outdoor shinny game at Hawrelak Park was advertised solely through social media and word of mouth just hours leading up to the game, resulting in a crowd of more than 1,500 Edmontonians.
“That was really a great experiment in terms of social media,” Frankson says. “It was amazing to see how many fans showed up just because of that.”
The department compiles a comprehensive analytics report to go over its thousands of likes, comments, mentions, and retweets each month to see what posts works and what doesn’t.
According to Frankson, the Oilers have the most engaged Facebook fans among all Canadian teams in the league.
The team is finding great success in its social networks – as they should.
You get what you put in and they’re putting in a lot when it comes to social media.
They didn’t stop with the posts during the NHL lockout and now that the season is back, it’s full-steam ahead for the Oilers’ social media team.
Follow the fun @EdmontonOilers or Facebook.com/Oilers.NHL
Edmonton Oilers Social Media by the Numbers
247,856 Likes on Facebook
178,590 Followers on Twitter
5,600 Retweets and 2,700 Favourited tweets last week (Jan. 12 to 18)
2,000 new Facebook Likes since the end of lockout was announced
1,100 new Twitter followers and 951 mentions on #ShinnyMob day alone (Jan. 13)
Some Tweets of the Week
@MitchSharma85: Trying to dodge potholes on #YEG roads today makes me feel like I’m in a real life version of Mario Kart #bananapeels
@Like_Snow_White: I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. Maybe an author, for graphic novels and children’s books. Maybe. Lots to do in Edmonton #yeg.
@bethyjninja: A client just showed me a binder they made. With achievements, poems, inspirations. A great reminder during tough days #HousingWorks #yeg
@shmoopita: Wow, incredible weather for #yeg this time of year! Another chance to BBQ.
@albertagrrrl: I am loving the weather today #yeg! Get outside and ENJOY!!! Let the breeze blow through your hair and let it blow all the bad energy away!