Browsing through my social media handles as I try to gather current information on all 18 clubs going to participate in the new Ghana Premier league season. There was this thing that I noticed with more than 60% of the clubs. Which is their social media accounts are usually inactivate.
The most bizarre moment was when I came across one club’s handle that last updated 8 days ago. Another club only created a Twitter page just this October and had less than 400 followers with only 5 tweets coming in since. Let’s bare in mind that the new league season starts this weekend and these clubs are suppose to promote it to keep fans hyped and to draw the attention of investors to the league.
All it seems is that most clubs have little idea of the role social media plays. Social media has become a bit of a phenomenon. It is used by businesses in all industries to promote their products and services as well as highlight their core values. Social Media has impacted every industry and it hasn’t left the sports industry untouched. It has become an essential element of sports fandom.
Almost 90% of professional football clubs across the world have active social media accounts, which could be an account on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram etc. but this is a trend that most clubs in Ghana are yet to follow and the main reason why it is so is that most of these clubs have no idea how significant social media is.
Social media is actively being used by professional clubs to interact and engage with fans, endorse brands and announce their activities. Some years ago, if you wanted to know the latest score from a game or news on a club, you would have to buy the latest sports newspaper or to listen to the radio. These days, you can go straight to the club’s social media page and you’ll have access to whatever information you want.
Through the use of social media, professional football clubs are able to know the interest or the concerns of their fans. In July, when Accra Hearts of Oak launched their new club jerseys. The club posted images from the event on it social media account, but things didn’t go down well with the fans of the club, the images were appalling, it had low quality, it was like that one that was snapped in the early 20th century. The fans expressed their disappointment and the club quickly had to work on that, which improved the jersey sales.
Professional teams also use social media to announce their activities, which includes player sales, player purchases, press statements, press conferences, upcoming club events etc. Clubs could also social media for marketing, which is advertise their products like jerseys etc.
Social media could also be used by the club to bridge the gap between fans and themselves. Plus, by using social media, the clubs are able to post news etc. before journalists know about it, which helps to reduce rumors and misinterpretation.
All these are the good benefits of having an active social media account and it is a field that most clubs in Ghana need to address in order to reach the summit.
Indeed there’s a ladder to climb, there’s a big aim of getting the Ghana premier league back among the elite leagues on the continent but that won’t come easy or naturally, the social media aspect of the game will be pivotal in achieving that.