Rivalries. Every school knows which opponents they love to hate. And each year, teams work hard preparing for the big game when - in front of screaming crowds - they’ll face off to declare that year’s victory.
While coaches and players put in hours in the gym, on the courts and fields, there are several things you can do as an athletic director to ensure you successfully promote the big game:
Step 1: Assemble your promotions team
Not sure who you’re looking for? The coaching staff, booster club, alumni association, and student groups all have broad networks that you would benefit from tapping into.
Step 2: USE SOCIAL MEDIA TO Publicize the event far in advance
Pump out information about the game on social media, encouraging your fans and players to do the same. On Facebook, the more attention your post gets (through likes and shares), the more the social network will show it to people. That’s how posts go viral. Consider the time of day when you post - people check their social accounts at different times throughout the day, so posting several times will increase the amount of eyes that see it. According to AdWeek, posting on Wednesdays or Thursdays between 1pm and 3pm boost your chances of high visibility.
Step 3: Utilize email to reach the masses
But remember: people’s inboxes are often filled with information that they don’t want or care about. To cut through the clutter, spend time focusing on an engaging subject line that will resonate with your fans. Including an image in the body of your email increases the likelihood that someone will read it. Plus, with tools like Mail Merge, you can personalize the sender so that people feel like the email’s been written just for them.
Step 4: Print flyers and post them around campus
As you approach game day, consider printing a few and posting them all over campus - dining halls, locker rooms, restrooms, hallways. Brightly colored paper will stand out. Try to keep the word count to a minimum - simplicity goes a long way in visual design! But be sure to include the date, time, and location.
Step 5: Publish a story in the school newspaper
The week before the big game, run a story or post an ad in your school’s newspaper. Doing so provides a great chance to talk about the season’s highlights and pump up the importance of this game. Plus, you can go into detail about your team. People love getting an inside view of the teams they love, so going into detail on some funny locker room stories or sharing information about your players (favorite ice cream, TV show, etc) makes them more relatable to their fans.
Rivalries between schools are part of what makes sports so great. When people think back on some of their best memories at school, there’s a good chance that cheering at the big game will make the top of the list. It’s up to you to make sure that everyone can make the most of it.