NFL on Social Media

Raiders TwitterNFL teams have to be as tough on social media as they are on the field. Jerry Knaak, the Oakland Raiders' director of digital media says, "You're getting instant feedback, which is invaluable. But you have to have a very thick skin and have to understand that that's part of it. It's sports. People are going to vent."

When the Raiders tweeted, "An 0-8 record isn't good, but many positives have come out of the first half of the season," the team got several negative responses. But that's expected on social media.

Experienced sports media people offer sound advice for organizations tweeting on game day, particularly when games aren't going well. Kevin Griffin, the Cleveland Browns' vice president of fan experience and marketing says, "You had to be very, very conscious that you weren't trying to make it look better than it actually was. People can see right through you. There's a level of credibility that you have to maintain."

Griffin suggests what we discuss in Chapter 3 of the textbook-social media is about the conversation: "Not that we hide or run from it, but we don't want to be negative. The default is always: You don't have to do it. It's not like it's going to cripple your business. It has to be a natural conversation." 

Discussion Starters: 

  • Read some of the Raiders' tweets during the game. How do you see the team engaging followers and fans?
  • Now read some of the responses. How would you characterize them? How should the organization respond to negative tweets?