The 2012-13 NBA season is amongst us and fans, players, coaches and teams themselves are beginning to take to Twitter.
The variation in followers across the league goes from teams having less than 100,000 to nearly three million. Let’s take a look at what some of the top accounts do and don’t do well to give some insight as to why they’ve gained so much traction in the social media spectrum.
Top 10 Most Followed NBA Twitter Accounts
10. Brooklyn Nets – 166,650 Followers
Description: Official home of the Brooklyn Nets on Twitter. Follow for breaking team news, behind the scenes photos, exclusive offers & giveaways.
Definitely one of the most aesthetically-pleasing pages of any NBA team, the simple black and white color scheme, combined with the left banner that says “FAN SINCE DAY ONE.” and the hashtag #HelloBrooklyn are excellent. The Nets don’t overload their fans with tweets, sending just a handful a day, but do a solid job of live-tweeting games. Everything Brooklyn has done to revamp its franchise after making the move from New Jersey has been stellar.
Which #BrooklynNet will lead the team in scoring on opening night @barclayscenter? #HelloBrooklyn
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) October 28, 2012
9. Los Angeles Clippers – 175,804 Followers
I appreciate the effort that the Clippers social media squad put into their page, but it’s pretty sloppy for a top 10 team. The left-side banner would be a nice, crisp touch, if it weren’t partially covered by an aerial Blake Griffin cut off at the armpits. The cover photo of an anonymous player in warm-ups is also a little off-putting and awkward. In addition to that, nearly every tweet has a link attached to the end of it, continuously pulling its followers away from the account. There isn’t even an account description. Not a fan.
Come check out Griffin at the corner of Chick Hearn and S Figueroa #ClipperNation instagr.am/p/RQxLyMKlTq/
— Los Angeles Clippers (@LAClippers) October 26, 2012
8. San Antonio Spurs – 205,272 Followers
Description: The official Twitter feed of the San Antonio Spurs updated by the dedicated staff of spurs.com.
It’s got a stylish background, a cool banner, and a hashtag in the description. Three-for-three. Plus, the first tweet I saw included a picture of The Silver Dancers. (Bonus points.) Like the Clippers, there are a lot of linked tweets, but the Spurs so a great job of live-tweeting and including the #GoSpursGo hashtag to keep followers involved and also name a Social Media Fan of the Week.
Congratulations to our Social Media Fan of the Week, Louie Lopez! Sign up here to become our next fan of the week: on.nba.com/See6eC
— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) October 26, 2012
7. Oklahoma City Thunder – 330,259 Followers
Description: Official Twitter feed of the Thunder. Also like us at http://www.facebook.com/thunderfans
Oklahoma City has hands-down the best cover photo, which shows the kind of unity the team has been trying to instill in its fans ever since leaving Seattle in 2008. The content itself is on the lighter side, though. Other than average live-tweeting, there aren’t too many original tweets.
Sam Presti on trade with @houstonrockets: “excited to add Kevin Martin/Jeremy Lamb to already strong core…continue to build for future.”
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) October 28, 2012
6. New York Knicks – 403,690 Followers
Description: Official Twitter account of the New York Knicks.
The Knicks Twitter account works in sync with a solid array of content from KnicksNow.com, but nearly every single tweet sent out includes a link to the site or an Instagram or Twitter picture. In fact, the only tweet to not include a link since Oct. 24 is a tweet promising video content from that site later on.
The #Knicks practicing today at the Garden prepping for the season opener twitter.com/nyknicks/statu…
— NBA New York Knicks (@nyknicks) October 28, 2012
5. Chicago Bulls – 567,712 Followers
Description: Official Twitter account of the Chicago Bulls: Tweets from the game, between, before, after, all about… Chicago Bulls basketball.
The Bulls have one of the cleanest-looking pages, with an eye-popping red-and-black shaded background of Chicago’s United Center. In addition, they do a good job of incorporating their beat writer, Sam Smith, and tagging him and re-tweeting his posts. There’s a good mix of live-tweeting, analysis, and other various types of tweets.
Hamilton hits a 17′ jumper off the inbounds play to put the #Bulls up 95-90 with 45 ticks on the clock. #INDvsCHI
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) October 27, 2012
4. Boston Celtics – 804,463 Followers
Description: The Official Feed of the 17-Time World Champions.
Mixing quotes from coaches and players, pictures, and retweets of players, the Celtics do a lot of great things on their page. The left banner is a rustic view of the old parquet floor, which is nice, but the right side is inexplicably black.
Doc Rivers just addressed the crowd as practice ended and chanted, “Beat the Heat! Beat the Heat!”
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) October 28, 2012
3. Miami Heat – 886,532 Followers
There’s no description — unlike the Heat to take a humble approach — and there’s an ugly “Let’s Go Heat” saying on the left banner that looks like it has been stretched by a gorilla. Other than that, the content is just as messy. Most tweets have too many things tagged in it, decreasing readability and fluidity.
“He’s like a quarterback out there” – @chrisbosh on @kingjames gohe.at/RnSlIi See what else was said after practice 2day about LeBron
— Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) October 28, 2012
2. Orlando Magic – 1,084,690 Followers
Description: This is the official Twitter of the Orlando Magic.
The Magic have a background that, upon first sight, is a fist in a huddle. Scroll down far enough and we see three more fists with the saying, “WE WILL”. It’s tough to say exactly what the Magic will do, but nonetheless its powerful. Apart from that, Orlando tweets about sales at the pro shop, reminders about open practices that fans can attend, and interviews with players.
Read @johndenton555 as he writes that Rob Hennigan is very confident with the 15 players that made the roster: on.nba.com/RXsuFo
— Orlando Magic (@Orlando_Magic) October 27, 2012
1. Los Angeles Lakers- 2,772,490 Followers
Description: Official Twitter Feed of the Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers have one of the most professional-looking and reading Twitter pages, pretty much using correct grammar and punctuation whenever possible. They also add a mixture of Instagram pictures, informative live-tweeting, and injury updates.
Like every other team in the NBA, the Lakers are 0-0. Games start to count Tuesday night.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) October 26, 2012
Who is your favorite NBA team on Twitter? Why do you think some teams have more followers than others? Let us know in the comments below or send us a tweet to @sportsnetworker
*NOTE: These statistics are accurate as of October 29, 2012
@juliephayer Thanks for sharing the article, Julie. Also, despite your site being “80% complete”, it looks great. What’d you use to make it?
@bhelleu @sportsnetworker Thanks for sharing the article, Boris. Bonjour!
@juliephayer Excellent. Looking forward to the finished product!
@CraigManfra @NBA @twitter I was surprised about No. 2, as well, Craig. Shocked, actually. Thanks for sharing!
@Pearsy_8Ball @sportsnetworker Thanks for sharing the article, Mick!
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Very descriptive article, I enjoyed that bit.
Will there be a part 2?