It can be argued that the best teams should have the best MLB Facebook Pages. If a team is successful on the field, you’d expect they’d be able to capitalize on fan fervor and strengthen their fan connection online. On the flip side, it might also be argued that the worst teams have nowhere to go but up and therefore have a lot more to gain by engaging their fans on Facebook.
What Makes Up A Good Facebook Fan Page?
Before we compare the top and worst MLB Teams Facebook Pages, let’s first consider the qualities that make up a good Facebook fan page. According to Inc., here are some highlights of what makes for a great page:
- Conversation between the moderator(s) and fans
- Offers and discounts
- Meetups or other opportunities for fans to get connected offline
Ignite Social Media suggests the best Facebook Pages are measured by “total fan actions (meaning comments, likes and wall posts.)”. So, without further adieu, let’s take a look at the top and worst teams from the 2011 MLB season and see how they compare.
Top Teams – MLB Facebook Pages
The Redbirds (more than 1.1 mil. fans more than 8,000 talking about) offer everything you could want in a fan page. There are interviews, invitations to see Stan Musial’s statue, special store offers, photos, video clips, announcements about the new print magazine, chances to submit questions for interviews, and player birthdays.
Texas (almost 1.1 mil and more than 7,500 talking about) posts less frequently than the Cards. While there are player birthdays, interviews, news and video clips, merchandise posts make up the greatest proportion of the team’s most recent posts.
The NL Central Champs (more than 530,000 fans and nearly 4K talking about) offer a variety of posts. Compared to the Cards, the team is a little heavy on merchandise promotions, but the champs have had a bit more news to disperse. Besides sales, the Brewers give fans notice of radio and TV interviews, as well as news, team footage and links to the team’s blog. For something different, Milwaukee gives fans a glimpse of the marketing department on YouTube. It also has content from its minor-league affiliates.
Cy Young and MVP winner Justin Verlander’s team (more than 870,000 fans with better than 8,400 talking about) does not disappoint. Unlike the previous three teams mentioned in this article, when I clicked on Detroit’s page, I arrived at a great-looking “Tigers Holiday Gifts” tab. It’s more offers for merchandise, yes, but it’s a nice change from the standard sales post. Clicking on the wall, the first post engages me with a question. On Detroit’s page, you can find posts with links to a front-office blog and news. Another perk of Tigers Facebook fandom is the trivia, photos and polls the club provides on a regular basis.
Worst Teams – MLB Facebook Pages
Houston (more than 373,000 likes and approaching 4,000 talking about) posts less often than a fan might like, but there are links to news, audio of press conferences, links to blog chats, links to the club’s blog, and thankfully, not too many calls for fans to buy. A couple unique features of this page are its “This Day in Astros History” posts, and, because the word is that people like to do everything without leaving Facebook, there is a tab to buy tickets.
Minnesota (better than 708,000 fans and near 3K talking about) had an off year last year, but it appears the club has not lost its touch with the fans. The first thing I see when I land on the page is, “Welcome: Become a fan of the Twins and get the latest team updates!” Minnesota also offers an assortment of tabs. Photos, polls & quizzes, tickets and Target Field Events give a fan plenty of options. If only the polls had been updated since August. The other downside is that the team’s wall has a disproportionate amount of merchandise offers.
The Mariners’ fan page (442,000+ fans and more than 3,200 talking about) is set up similar to the Twins’. Seattle’s page has a nice assortment of news, links to stories and video clips as well as pictures and sales offers.
Baltimore (better than 320 K and almost 2K talking about) looks similar to Minnesota and Seattle. The O’s have a more recent poll question (Oct.) as well as a Junior Orioles Dugout Club tab. The Orioles post infrequently in the offseason, but fans can expect variety. The Orioles ask fans for their opinions on the return of the cartoon bird logo and also engage fans with compelling posts that make them feel special. “Be the first to see the new look of Birdland! Visit orioles.com tomorrow at 9:30 am for the exclusive unveiling of the Orioles new uniforms,” one post reads.
Does Performance On The Field Matter?
Looking at these eight teams, it’s clear from the numbers that winning fosters enthusiastic fans, but how much winning matters on Facebook is probably less than you might think. Examine the Brewers’ numbers compared to the Mariners’, for example. They are not all that different, which proves again content is key. The success of these pages lies in marketing and in offering interesting posts almost as much as winning and losing on the field.
What is your favorite team and how connected do you feel with the organization? Which are your favorite MLB Facebook Pages and why? Leave your comments below and feel free to share with your friends on Facebook and Twitter.