Follow me, they said. And that’s how it all started. A social network of discussions in 140 characters or less, it took the world by storm and the NHL and its teams didn’t take long to realize how amazing of a marketing tool this little blue bird could be. After all, what better way to get into your fans’ homes all at once simply by having someone type a few words that, unlike regular media, YOU control the content and the timing?
Fans quickly created their own Twitter account to better follow members of the media and their favourite team(s). Rumour sites love this tool allowing them to beat the traditional media with what they feel is a race to gain credibility. The print media uses it to promote its latest publications on their web site and bloggers around the word have all become professional reporters.
Looking around the NHL though, one can easily notice that some teams have had more success in promoting than others. Is this due to the number of fans? Or is it that some don’t understand the impact it has on the popularity and accessibility of their team?
The NHL understood however. It has more than half a million followers around the world, ranging I’m sure from casual fans to professional media, and from players to former players. There is however a huge discrepancy amongst NHL teams as you will see. As Twitter users know too well, you win some and you lose some followers on a daily basis so the numbers compiled below are a picture only at this time, and could be different tomorrow, in a month, or in a year from now.
The Montreal Canadiens have, by far, the most followers with over 124,000 people reading them. They lead second place Vancouver by a whopping 39,000 followers! In last place, the once proud NY Islanders have around 10,600 followers, only a few hundred from the Phoenix Coyotes.
NHL teams struggling at the gate seem to all be in the bottom of the Twitter followers and perhaps a little marketing is needed in order to better connect with their fans or potential fans through this easy, yet efficient tool of social interaction. I know that even I am learning. @Habsterix