If they are looking at it from the right perspective, brands market to these fans because of their passion, not just because they are a large audience.
Above all else, fans care about their favorite team, possibly a player. That’s their passion point. Not a brand’s message. Understanding that is the most powerful factor in sports marketing success on social media.
Why is this more critical for digital and social than in more traditional mediums (TV, print, etc.)? Because relevance is critical to sharing, and sharing is mandatory to success on social media.
With TV and print, the advertisers are relying on content producers to gather the audience. The advertiser then hands off an ad to be delivered to that audience. They have no responsibility to earn or generate reach.
That’s not the case in social media. In order to be seen on social, you need to create something that people want to share or discuss. Even if you pay to promote that content, your reach will suffer greatly if the audience doesn’t share it.
Want to have success with sports fan on social media? Think like a content producer, not an advertiser. That means spending more time evaluating the audience and what they react to than the message and creative you hope to deliver.
The brands that have the most success reaching sports fans on social media are the ones that are willing to be part of what the fan is passionate about. They align themselves with that passion point, or they create something that helps celebrate that passion, or they help fans better experience that passion. They assist instead of lead. That’s tough to do if you’re only focused on your brand and the message you want to deliver.