The Olympic Games only come around every four years; not news to most. But what happens to Olympic athletes and lesser known sports during those four long years?
As Dr Andrea Eagleman explains, they are using social media to remain in the limelight.
“Olympic sports and athletes are only in the spotlight every four years, but social media offers them a way to stay relevant and develop stronger fan bases in off years. They are still competing; the events are just not as high profile as the Olympic Games.”
Olympic Athletes utilizing social media to remain relevant
Dr Eagleman is well experienced in the area of Olympic Athletes and the four years between the Games. Her recent research on the subject of athletes and social media is complimented by her time as a communications assistant for USA Gymnastics.
The School of Sport and Exercise researcher (Massey University) interviewed staff at a number of sports organizations as part of her study. Her study found that many of the Olympic athletes interviewed used social media to remain relevant during the four year “break”.
What many people may not realize, is the fact that lesser-known sports do not end after the Olympics. Many sports just don’t get the mainstream media attention apart from the Olympics. When is the last time you saw curling in primetime?
Well, other than when Ron Burgundy is on the call of course:
Social Media Benefitting Olympic Athletes
Dr Eagleman goes on to explain that most Olympic athletes partake in social media and believe it has an effect:
“What I found was that most of them feel very comfortable with the idea. However some don’t have the expertise or staff to do it properly, so they are really swimming blindly. But those surveyed say they do feel successful in reaching their fans – in a way they have become their own media outlet.”
She explains that many carry out social media actions as a way to remind people that they haven’t gone anywhere. But at the same time, some are inexperienced in marketing themselves.
Either way, social media marketing is a free and easy way to remain in the limelight year-round. And with the recent release of the official Olympic Hub app, athletes are sure to stay in connection with their fans.
Photo credit – telegraph.co.uk
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