Ten Reasons Learfield Sports Should Tweet

In the midst of my usual sports business ramblings on Twitter last week, I wrote the following message:

“Come on @ispsportnetwork and @learfield. Two of the biggest college sports marketing brands – you guys can do so much more on Twitter!”

I didn’t think much of this at the time. I sent it because I noticed that these two corporate Twitter accounts had a very low number of followers, didn’t tweet much and offered little in terms of actual content. I was pleasantly surprised when a few days later, I got the following reply from@Learfield:

Learfield: @rscibetti Guilty as charged. Been working on the Grown-Ups for 3 years. How about a blog post: “10 Reasons Learfield Sports Should Tweet”

So, at the prompting of the @Learfield Twitter account, here are ten reasons why Learfield Sports should tweet (in no particular order):

  1. Raise awareness for your properties – At a most basic level, Twitter gives you a popular communication channel to promote all the great things that your college teams are doing, both on and off the field.
  2. Create an engagement opportunity to connect with fans and customers across your properties – Beyond promoting the schools and teams, Twitter will let you interact with the fans in those locations, building a deeper connection to the property and also providing you valuable feedback.
  3. Help test and execute social media campaigns that you can share as best practices with your properties – What better way to assist your properties than by learning about Twitter yourselves, finding out what can be most effective, and then spreading best practices across your different locations.
  4. Engage in conversation with other sports media and sponsorship professionals – Twitter is an incredible educational platform that gives you an easy way to learn from other industry leaders and apply those ideas to your company.
  5. Leverage your network of properties to create high-value social media promotions that generate direct value for top-level sponsors – It’s one thing for a corporate partner to run a Twitter contest with one location…you can harness the power of Twitter across multiple locations to really generate a powerful campaign for a sponsor.
  6. Get direct feedback about current marketing promotions that your properties are running – People on Twitter are honest and direct, which will help you learn what is and is not working.
  7. Connect with future Learfield employees – There are a lot of talented individuals on Twitter that have unique skill sets that could benefit both Learfield and your properties.
  8. Create more value that can help retain customers – If you are at risk of losing certain partners, perhaps developing integrated, cross-property social media campaigns as an addition to their current elements can provide more value and help retain your customers.
  9. Build a stronger relationship with your properties – Some schools are running great social media campaigns, while others are well-behind the curve. If you can leverage your own Twitter presence is a way that educates and assist these schools, you provide more value and make your relationship indispensable.
  10. It’s fun – I wanted this to be last, but there’s importance to it. There is a uniquely fun element to engaging with others through Twitter, and I believe that whoever at Learfield shares this responsibility will get more satisfaction out of their job, which will in turn make them a better employee.

So that is my list of 10 reasons why Learfield Sports should tweet. I hope I’ve made a strong case for it, and if anyone at Learfield would like to talk more about this, they can reach me right here!

4 thoughts on “Ten Reasons Learfield Sports Should Tweet

  • February 15, 2010 at 12:26 pm
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    Russell,
    I don’t disagree with anything you wrote except your initial claim. Learfield does Tweet. I converse with at least a dozen employees from Learfield on a regular basis. The power of Learfield is in its’ employees. Fans don’t care about the corporate company itself, they care about the people who are working for and representing their favorite universities.

    In my opinion, the @learfield corporate account is beneficial for #7, connecting with future employees. Twitter is a great way to see who’s out there and who might be a good fit for their company even if there’s no position currently available and/or the future candidate is not looking to change jobs at this time (hence future).

    Future employees aside, in my opinion the value of Learfield’s presence on Twitter lies with their employees. They have the ability, like coaches, to provide little tidbits of content that others can’t provide.

    Great post as usual, Russell.

    -Joshua Duboff
    (@joshuaduboff)

  • February 15, 2010 at 12:32 pm
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    Maybe I should have clarified a bit. The original tweet was specifically referring to their corporate account, which exists but didn’t do much. If you just searched our Learfield on Twitter and found this account, you wouldn’t get much from it. That is not to take anything away from the employees that do tweet (I know some of them as well).

    Even with those individual efforts, there is a tremendous opportunity starting at the top for them to do more with Twitter. Take what IEG does – even their individual accounts are obviously connected back to IEG, and both their individual and corporate accounts are actively communicating and providing value.

  • February 15, 2010 at 1:46 pm
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    I think it’s hard to compare IEG and Learfield. IEG’s value is within itself, the research and analysis that it provides in sports business. Learfield’s only as valueable as its’ properties; which is why I think the employee accounts are so valueable.

    I’m not suggesting that Learfield shouldn’t use @Learfield to connect with others, but I don’t think their corporate account is as valueable as that of IEG or SBJSBD.

  • February 15, 2010 at 6:19 pm
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    Good post, Russell. My name is Steve Mays and I responded to your shout out and suggested you write this post.

    As Joshua pointed out, Learfield has a lot of folks using Twitter. VP of Sports Operations and Affiliate Relations, Aaron Worsham (@learfieldsports) jumped on Twitter as soon as he saw it and has been making great use of it. I won’t take space to mention the others.

    I set up @learfield with the thought that then CEO Clyde Lear or COO Roger Gardner might use it, just as you described. But they set up their own accounts.

    Our new CEO (and long time head of sports, Greg Brown) started using Twitter about a week ago, to report on a volunteer trip to Haiti. He’s also feeding a Posterous page at http://learfield.posterous.com … and doing a terrific job.

    But you point is well taken, we (as a company) have not taken full advantage of this –and other social media- tool(s). We have sort of a French Resistance underground effort underway to demonstrate the power of these tools.

    And now we have enlisted you. Thanks for the tips.

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