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Applications of Facebook in Athletics Development

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

This post was originally published by Athletics Development Frontier, which can be reached at www.developmentfrontier.com.

Currently, one of the biggest buzz words in business and sports administration school is the term new media. This word is used to define any type of advertising or communication medium other than radio, print or television. With the advent of blogs, Facebook, mass texts and Twitter, this staple of communication will be around for quite some time.

The main question lies where and when should a development office utilize this new medium as an area of communication for donors. While alumni associations and marketing offices have had most of the early success in this market, several athletics departments have started Facebook groups as a way to attract and communicate to younger donors.

Brown Univeristy is one of the most successful, with over 400+ members in their Facebook group. William and Mary, Ohio State, and Seton Hall have all started groups recently for their donors. Membership may not be high by Facebook standards, but as recent graduates age, this communication medium will certainly grow.

However, for this approach to work, it will require some maintaining and interactivity. Photographs of events need to be posted, group members recruited, and the wall frequently updated. Like most websites, keeping the material fresh and relevant will be key in the early going to drive traffic to the site. Before starting a group, a development office needs to question if they have the time and resources to make the site live up to their expections and not diminish their brand.

If used effectively, Facebook can help drive traffic and increase awareness of athletics development funds to donors. However, they must be maintained and marketed, just like any normal website.

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April 20, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. I think advertising via networks like Facebook and Twitter are great ideas for colleges and their athletic teams. I think far too many people look at the negatives behind social networking–what not to do on Facebook, but I think that it is important to recognize, that sites like Facebook and Twitter, if used in the right way and maintained routinely, can become positive pieces in helping out colleges and their teams, and even other departments.

    Comment by Libby Segal | April 23, 2009 | Reply

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