By: Lisa Leclerc, Director of Communications and Marketing, Guelph Predators Ringette Association
I love ringette. You may be thinking to yourself “what does loving ringette have to do with promoting on social media?” Well, everything. As a player for over 30 years, a coach, a mom with 2 daughters in the sport, and now as the Director of Communications and Marketing with the Guelph Predators Ringette Association, my love of ringette fuels my passion in the promotion of our sport – especially when it comes to creating online content.
How it all Started
Let’s rewind a little bit to pre-season in the summer of 2017. Our foundational, regional registration numbers in Guelph had dropped across U7 – U12 programs and we found our association struggling to field teams in every division. Our previous marketing efforts were no longer enough with the growth of other competing winter ice sports in town. We needed to act fast to find new ways to market our sport to increase our registration numbers without breaking the bank. Enter, social media!
I had been given the green light from our Executive to manage our online social media platforms but quickly came to realize that there wasn’t a volume of quality ringette content online. So, to fix this, I had to create some (with a little help from my photog Hubby) and I have been building an online ringette marketing presence in Guelph, one post at a time, ever since. What has been extra rewarding is that our content is regularly circulated beyond our Guelph ringette community and we have been recognized in Ontario, across Canada and internationally for our ringette promotion online through social media.
Creating Social Media Content
I regularly receive messages and DMs through our social media platforms from folks within other ringette associations asking about our content. So, when Ringette Ontario approached me to write this blog, I was excited to share some of what I’ve learned with everyone and maybe help some ringette associations get started with their own social media promotion.
Here is the skinny on what I’ve learned promoting ringette online through social media:
Create a Facebook, Instagram and Twitter account for your association. There are other applications that associations could use but these primary platforms connect to one another and make posting so much easier (an Instagram post can simultaneously post to Facebook and Twitter which can save enormous amounts of time). They are also the most widely used and recognized by folks looking for information.
Be sure to modify your content using your association colours – your “brand colours”; any text you add to a post, background colours, etc.
Use your logo and your website address on every post! You are marketing - every time you post and you want to send people to your website and get that logo recognized.
Content – Get Creative
Make posts interesting! There are easy to use FREE apps can help you to edit, add text, animate and add creativity to your posts. Examples of great of apps include: Snapseed, Canva and Font Candy.
Find some photographers in your association who can take clear, sharp pictures of your teams, players, parents, events, etc. Cellphone pictures aren’t always ideal - decent but not always post worthy. That said, you can edit cellphone pictures! You don’t need to know Photoshop or be that tech savvy to edit photos. In fact, you can edit pics right from your phone or Instagram – these apps can clean up pictures before you post - filters can be your friend.
Social Media Management
Selecting a content manager is important. They should be creative and understand how to post and manage social media accounts (don’t forget the Facebook and Instagram Stories!) and can stay connected to what is happening within your association and beyond. It is also important to select someone who has the time to create content and post. Creating quality content takes time and dedication. Your content manager should also understand expectations for posting (quality content, brand colours, number of posts per day, etc.). There is a balance in timing of your posts. If there are too few posts, it won’t build your brand. If there are too many posts, it may turn people away from your platforms.
Creating and posting should be fun – it should be a reflection on the outside of what is felt about ringette on the inside. Promotion of our sport online has come a long way in the last 2 years, and ringette is growing - let’s grow it some more!
For examples of our content you can follow the Guelph Predators Ringette Association on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Happy posting ringette friends!
Looking for more social media tips and tutorials? Visit Ringette Ontario's Marketing Resources
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