Jeremy Lin Fan Appreciation Week Review

What has Social Media provided for athletes? For some it has assisted with their career and for others it’s had a detrimental effect. The positives and negatives all relate and impact on the athlete’s ‘Personal Branding’. The growth of social media has changed the way professional athletes develop their personal brand. This aspect of their career is exceptionally important as it affects their marketability, popularity and sponsorship/endorsement opportunities.

Catalyst Public Relations published a study which found that sports fans are 55% more likely to purchase a particular brand that their favourite athlete, whom they are following mentions it on Facebook or Twitter

Jeremy Lin, NBA point guard of the Houston Rockets is a prime example of an athlete who has effectively managed his brand since he shot to stardom after an impressive run of performances for the New York Knicks. In the mecca of basketball, New York City, Lin’s sudden rise won him thousands and thousands of fans worldwide and the ‘LINSANITY’ craze caught on.

During the NBA playoffs Jeremy Lin hosted ‘Fan Appreciation Week’ using different social media platforms, giving him the opportunity to give back to his fans that have supported him throughout his career. A simple gesture which goes a long way in maintaining and building his popularity.

Jeremy Lin - Fan Appreciation Week

Facebook Q&A

Monday started with the Facebook Q&A, which featured 18,424 Likes, 124 Shares and 5605 Comments. As Jeremy Lin is of Taiwanese descent he has a large following of fans around Asia. To capitalise on this he has an English and Chinese Facebook page which reaches both fan bases. Unfortunately Lin wasn’t able to respond to all comments, but seemed to answer as many as he could during the time.

The Q&A was a simple and effective way for Lin to reach and engage with his fans while giving his followers the opportunity to ask any question, within reason and be answered. Questions ranged from obscure ones like “Chuck Norris VS Liam Neeson in a fight ….. Who wins?” to “Funniest guy in the Rockets?

Jeremy Lin - Fan Appreciation Week - Day 1 Facebook Q&A

Rockets Artwork Contest

This was the first contest of the ‘Appreciation Week’, which involved Twitter. Followers were required to send in any Rockets artwork they had created with five followers chosen to win a signed ‘Linsanity Movie Poster’.

This contest also had a dual purpose. Not only did it promote fans to interact with Lin, it also created an avenue to promote the upcoming ‘Linsanity Movie’. We have also seen this occur in posts from Teams such as the Golden State Warriors, where they promoted sponsors while engaging and interacting with their fans, providing the ever present dual purpose of social media. As we can see from the Topsy.com graph below the @JLin7 handle was mentioned 941 times during the day two contest.

Jeremy Lin - Fan Appreciation Week - @JLin7 mentions

Instagram Impersonation Contest

Fan Appreciation Week Day 3: Rockets Impersonation Contest! Post (and tag @jlin7) a picture on instagram of you impersonating a Rockets player(s). Heres my sample of @jharden13 on the left and @chandler_parsons on the right. Be creative and winners announced tonight!

Let the impersonations begin! Day 3 featured a Rockets impersonation contest via Instagram.

SINA Weibo Q&A

Lin hosted another Q&A, this time on the Chinese micro blogging site SINA Weibo. It was evident that Lin made a major effort to maintain his global appeal especially in Asia. In 2012 Lin returned to Taiwan to participate and instruct a local youth basketball camp with the assistance of NBA player David Lee – making good on a promise he made earlier in the year.

Multiple Choice Quiz via Facebook

We are back on Facebook for the final day of ‘Appreciation Week’ and the fans have to answer a Multiple Choice Quiz and the first person to answer them all right wins a signed pair of shoes.

Jeremy Lin - Fan Appreciation Week - Day 5 - Facebook Quiz

While this post received 7518 Likes, 137 Shares and 629 Comments, it didn’t experience the same success as the Day 1 Q&A. Besides the dilemma of going through the comments to find the winners of the competition (Lin mentioned he got a headache looking through the submissions), the quiz format would only reach those who waited for the post, thus limiting it’s reach. When social media competitions prompt followers to be the first to answer or post you are neglecting your casual followers who aren’t constantly connected. Having a competition which allows followers to post a simple entry such as the Twitter art work and Instagram impersonation you are now allowing the majority of your followers to participate.

Looking over the events of ‘Appreciation Week’, Lin has proved how simple it is using social media to interact with his fans and in the process thank them for their support. The ‘LINSANITY’ craze may have been lighting in a bottle with Lin’s move to Houston but through the use of simple and effective competitions and the continual interaction on a regular basis, Lin has be able maintained his popularity globally. The great use of social media combined with regular visits and accommodating his Asian fan base has in turn increased his marketability and improved his chances of garnering endorsements.

Lin’s Volvo Commercial

Lin heads out for some ‘street-ball’ with David Lee

Athletes in many sports worldwide have a short career span. What social media has provided is another avenue off the field or court to develop an athlete’s brand. It has also allowed middle tier players in many leagues to increase their popularity with their personality and social media savvy competitions to increase their name recognition to heights only reserved for the superstars.

Have a read of the ‘Social Media Guidelines’ post, which outlines what athletes need to consider when posting to maintain a positive image.

What other athletes do you feel have done a great job in maintaining their personal brand through Social Media? We would love to hear your thoughts.

Lin takes part in #HerosHangout on Google+

Lin also recently took part in a Google Hangout as a part of the Veteran’s United channel, where he discussed life as an NBA player and conversed with military heroes from across the US.

#BODSW is back with #SuperBowl XLVI, Pinterest, and some #Linsanity

Welcome back, again, to Sports Geek’s #BODSW. After a hefty break over the summer months while I was following in Sean’s footsteps,

Excuse the hat, but wouldn't you be wearing it in minus-16 degree weather?!

conducting my own #sportsgeektrip in the USA, including watching Green Bay’s Matt Flynn throw 6 touchdowns in minus-16 degree weather, the (at the time) 2-12 Washington Wizards upset the 12-2 OKC Thunder, and catching a Knicks game before all the #Linsanity, we are back and better than ever, as this week we have a look at the social media impact in Indianapolis during Super Bowl XLVI, the growing popularity of Pinterest (along with a quick review), and athletes and social media. Along with this, we’ll have a look at who gets best on ground this week for excellence in combining sports and social media. So sit back and enjoy 2012′s first #bodsw and remember to keep an eye out on my Pinterest site for photos of my very own #sportsgeektrip across America.

Social Media at #SuperBowl XLVI

We know who won Super Bowl XLVI, with the New York Giants’ Eli Manning again being a thorn in Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots’ side, but who won the social media battle from Super Bowl 46? To get an idea of the link between social media and sport, check out this cool info graphic and story on the big dance in Indianapolis earlier this month, which included an unfathomable 5.6 million Super Bowl-related tweets!

Pinterest: Have you started pinning?

Arguably the fastest growing new social media platform on the internet, Pinterest is gaining more users seemingly by the second. With comScore estimating the website gains over 10 million unique viewers monthly, the online pinboard needs to be investigated to see how sporting organisations can incorporate it into their digital marketing strategies. If you aren’t sure what Pinterest is, check out New York Times’ tech columnist David Pogue‘s review on the revolution.

Be sure to check out Sports Geek’s Pinterest page, as well as Sean’s own page for some great sports-related pins. And remember, Pinners, images are the key to pinning items, so find some great images and get pinning.

In case you missed it, Sean was on ABC Grandstand last week with Francis Leach and Amanda Shalala, discussing the growth of Pinterest, and remember to tune into ABC Grandstand at 7:45am  to hear the latest news from the digital sports world.

How not to use Twitter

With Twitter such a huge part of our lives now, including our sporting lives, the US state of Maryland has taken a somewhat radical approach to their student-athletes and Twitter; banning it. Towson University football coach Rob Ambrose has banned his players from tweeting after one of his players tweeted a racial slur before a football game. Check out this list of schools in Maryland, created by WBALTV.com, that have some interesting policies on social media access for athletes.

The AFL and Telstra join forces, leave Optus out

Big news from the AFL  this week with their new deal with Telstra that will allow fans to watch every game this season straight from their smartphone or tablet device. With the NFL, NBA and MLB having such great success with channels such as NFL Game Pass and the NBA’s League Pass, it’s great to see the AFL starting to catch up to the world leaders in online content.

On the other side of the AFL/Telstra deal, rival telecommunications giant Optus is seeking legal action against Andrew Demetriou and the AFL over comments made by the AFL CEO during an interview with the Sunday Herald Sun. Be sure to keep an eye on how this one pans out.

Best on Ground

The first best on ground for 2012 goes to Sports Illustrated for their March Madness Cover Challenge, where readers can enter a competition to get their own picture on the cover of the March 19 edition of the long-running sports magazine. It’s an excellent initiative by an iconic sporting magazine, and one that is sure to excite it’s fans worldwide. Check out Sports Illustrated’s cover challenge on it’s Facebook page now. Entries close March 5th, 2012.

Video of the Week

By now, you’ve probably heard all about Jeremy Lin and all the terrible puns (Linsanity, Lincredible, Super Lintendo, etc.) that have crept into the vocabulary of NBA fans worldwide. If you haven’t heard about the young Harvard graduate who took the road less travelled to the NBA, then check out this video of his game-winner against the Toronto Raptors that sent the Madison Square Garden crowd into a frenzy. Be sure to check out how Sports Geek linked the New York Knicks with a New York-based info graphic artist - all the way from Melbourne. Enjoy!

#BODSW – Best of Digital Sports World compiled with the help of @Dion_Bennett

#Grandstand recap – Floyd Mayweather, #Linsanity & Pinterest

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In case you missed it earlier today here is a quick recap what Sean discussed with Francis & Amanda on ABC Grandstand.

Listen to the segment, thanks to Josh for hooking us up.


Floyd Mayweather Vs #Linsanity

Take a look at Floyd Mayweather’s tweet regarding the meteoric rise of Jeremy Lin in the NBA (as this Linofgraphic explains).
Poor form from Mayweather, it shows athletes need to treat Twitter the same as a radio mike or TV camera. Amazingly it got over 8000 RTs as fans were either showing support or highlighting the boneheaded tweet to friends.

Pinterest – The Jeremy Lin of Social Media


Like Lin Pinterest is getting plenty of press for it’s amazing stats in a short amount of time. Pinterest is a online destination where you “pin” your favourite things. Women have been flocking to the new platform posting fashion, design & motivational images but like Twitter who you follow will determine your Pinterest experience.  A few sports teams are testing out the platform you can find them here, let us know if you find more.

Follow Me on Pinterest

Sports Geek Medals

Each week Francis wants medals awarded from the sports digital world this week we have a focus on #sportsbiz

Bronze – Peter Robert Casey

Peter was the first media-credentialled tweep in NCAA & NBA. Read more about it here.

Silver – Bryan Srabian

Bryan Srabian – Bryan is the “engager” behind the @sfgiants watch him talk about what tweeting behind the scenes at the World Series.

Gold – Darren Rovell

Darren Rovell – Darren is a Twitter vet who has driven sports business news into a TV show Game On NBC Sports. Check out his latest clips.

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Until next week

Tune into ABC Grandstand Breakfast over the weekend on digital radio.

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Podcast transcription

FRANK: Amanda Shalala , Francis Leach with you, as well as a man who likes to hand out a business card that says I’m Sports Geek. Sean Callanan consults to a whole range of sporting clubs when it comes to digital media and selling yourself in that space, and he joins us here on Grandstand this morning to keep us up to date each week on what’s going on in Twittersphere and elsewhere in the world of sport. Good day, Sean. How are you going?

SEAN: Good day, Francis, good morning.

FRANK: I know you’ve done some work with the Manly Sea Eagles over the last little while as well.

SEAN: Yes, and they’re doing okay, but I’m sure Geoff Toovey, the new coach there, would like to be… might give him a blast at halftime, I’d say.

FRANK: Now, Amanda, do you follow anyone on Twitter from sports clubs, and the like, isn’t that how you source a lot of your information these days as well?

AMANDA: Oh, yeah, definitely. It’s often the first place to get information. For example, the other day when Michael Clark, we were waiting to find out how long he was out for with that hamstring injury. The first news of it was from his Twitter account, so it’s actually really important as a journo to be across all the different athletes.

FRANK: And, Sean, that’s what you do.

SEAN: Yeah, and it’s exactly the same. The athletes have to realize that every single tweet is quotable and can appear in the news. Just last week we were talking to the guys at the Adelaide Crows who thought it was funny to have a little bit of a Twitter Stash at the media’s expense. And then it obviously gets picked up by the papers as a bit of a war at the Crows, and all they were doing was having a bit of a joke.

FRANK: And so it gets blown out of proportion. They’ve got to learn that when they send something as a tweet they’re actually publishing.

SEAN: Exactly, exactly, and if they want to have fun with it then put a smiley face or leave a sarcastic hashtag at the end; unfortunately, I think it’s a ____ like this, not a more sarcastic font. People can’t read that, so…

FRANK: Now we know that particularly in a lull in it this sporting season if you give a hungry media an opportunity to start a song and dance then they’ll crank it up big time. I guess that’s the nature of things. Now, Sean, each week we’re going to have a look around Twitter and elsewhere in the social media to see what’s being said in the world of sport and who is saying what to whom. The big one this week has been Floyd Mayweather, boxer, who turned his hand to a bit of criticism of Jeremy Lin the basketball sensation from the New York Knicks. Now give us a bit of background on this one.

SEAN: Well, yeah, I mean, if you haven’t heard the Jeremy Lin story or linsanity you obviously haven’t turned on a computer in the last two weeks, but Jeremy Lin from the New York Knicks, the story went one day from being cut and then he starts playing for the Knicks first six games, scores the most points in the NBA in his first six starts, more than Shaq, more than Jordan, and playing really well, and really energizing New York, and obviously New York is a town that loves this sport, and if a story is going to go big It’s going to go big.
Unfortunately Floyd Mayweather decided to get on Twitter and tweet that Jeremy Lin’s only getting coverage because he’s Asian. If it was an African American player, playing, he wouldn’t get as much exposure, which is obviously disappointing. What is astounding from my point of view, that tweet itself got 8,000 retweets, so whether that’s all the people agreeing with him or just amplifying it to make sure the media finds out that he’s made such a silly tweet.

AMANDA: I’m interested afterwards, he sort of seemed to go on this offensive because he’s retweeting everyone saying great things about him, like, you know, Floyd Mayweather greatest athlete ever. Is this part of a strategy for him to try and restore his image, do you think?

SEAN: Ah, it’s a little bit of that. I think Floyd Mayweather is a little bit all about him. I mean one of his tweets earlier this year trying to get that rematch with Manny Pacquiao got 92,000 retweets when effectively he called him out and said, ‘Come on, let’s get it on.’ So, you know, it’s part boxing promotion type of thing. I think that’s the way it is, but, yes, he definitely hasn’t really hit the mark with his phone.

FRANK: You ran into him into, didn’t you, in the states recently when you were over there on business?

SEAN: Well that’s the thing. I was speaking at a conference in LA and we came out in the LA live precinct, near the Staple Center. We couldn’t realize why this big crowd was there and there’re six really big blokes holding all this crowd back, and in the middle was a little bloke in the middle. And all these people were taking pictures of them and they had the six Escalade’s, black Escalade’s there—you thought they’re obviously going to hop in the cars and ride off, but no they were only a 100 meters from the hotel where we were staying and so they just decided to walk the 100 meters and take this crew of about 200 people, and it was really just for the spectacle. It was like, yeah, I’m going to be in the middle, and he had all these big former lineman, his own posse, sort of pushing everyone back. But he’s only a little guy, but I’m sure he packs a punch when you’re in the ring.

FRANK: That was Floyd Mayweather walking 100 meters to his hotel room.

SEAN: Yep, pretty much, pretty much, and me and my friend were there because we were staying there. We sort of got our hotel passes out and worked our way through the crowd, Wayne’s World style, to get in the hotel. They were going, ‘Why are those guys gettin’ in?’ Well, we were staying there, but I tried to get myself a snap but my friend wasn’t very good with the iPhone camera, so…

FRANK: Sean, what was the reaction on Twitter, to Mayweather’s comments. I mean it was a fury of indignation because the numbers don’t lie, and Jeremy Lin’s numbers in terms of his first five games do say that he’s the best starter in the history of the sport.

SEAN: Yeah, and there has been a bit of money-bowl analysis of it in that couple of guys—it’s easy to come out now and say he’s done really well, but some of his stats of getting points in the paint and showing that he was right up there with some of the really good NBA college players that sort of said that he could do well. And the other thing is the Australian connection. He actually played under Bryan Goorjian during the lockouts, and there’s actually been a bit of support from Australian players like Chris Anstey saying ‘Bryan Goorjian is one of the best development coaches,’ so maybe we can claim, at least Bryan Goorjian can claim, a few tweeks to Jeremy Lin’s game because he was a rookie last year with Golden State and just didn’t get the opportunity.

FRANK: We’ll try and catch up with Bryan Goorjian, hopefully, today and talk to him about Jeremy Lin and coaching him and whether the Goorj had an impact on his incredible meteoric rise to success. Now, Amanda, do you know anything about Pinterest?

AMANDA: Pinterest, no, I have no idea.

FRANK: Sean, tell us about that. Is this the latest to the sports digital experience?

SEAN: So, so Pinterest is the Jeremy Lin of social media. It just had a nice segue because it is just completely blowing up at the minute. It’s an online pin board, so as you find pictures and articles, but more pictures as a visual medium, you pin it to a board. So I have a board called linsanity, so any time a new Jeremy Lin photo comes out, a new name or a new mesh up of something, I will pin it to a linsanity board. I have a board of stadiums I’ve been to, so I’ll put pictures of that, so the idea is you can put whatever you like there. But initially I think I got on a couple of weeks ago. Initially I got on there and it didn’t seem that it was going to be very much of a male-centric social network. I went on there; there was wedding dresses, cupcakes, high heel shoes, so if you’re a single man I’d advise you to get on board. It’s a target-rich environment, but it’s a bit like Twitter. It’s what you make of it, so if you follow a lot of people who are talking sport or music or whatever, then obviously you’ll feed you. You can curate your own feed. And the reason it’s really blowing up, it’s a bit viral. It’s invite only at the minute, so you’ve got to know someone who’s on Pinterest that can give you an invite, but it’s a really big traffic driver for websites, so if I was to go to the grandstand site and take a picture of the grandstand site and pin it to the Pinterest board, people might click on that link and then come back to the site, so from a web traffic point of view, it’s driving more traffic than sites like Google Plus and Linked In and things like that, so that’s why it’s getting a real lot of buzz.

FRANK: If you want to get involved how do you?

SEAN: You pretty much go to Pinterest and request an invite or most likely if you got your Facebook feed you will see someone posting lots of pictures of cupcakes or Jeremy Lin and ask them, but eventually they’ll open it up completely.

FRANK: Amanda’s going to post her badminton photos.

AMANDA: Yeah, exactly, sure.

FRANK: And she’s going to have a Pinterest European handball side as well.

AMANDA: While holding a cupcake.

SEAN: So at the moment it’s a bit different to the other networks that are real broadcasty, like you’ll use Twitter to say he’s the latest news. The idea is meant to be around your brands.

FRANK: Before we let you go, the podium, the digital podium. Each week we’re going to ask you to give us three things, a 3, 2, & 1 from the digital space this week in the world of sport and people who are doing interesting stuff.

SEAN: Yep, so my 3, 2, 1 this week, I’m looking at SportsBiz for a bronze medal, Peter Robert Casey, so it’s @peter_r_casey. He’s a guy from New York. He was the first guy to ever get media accreditation for tweeting.

FRANK: Really, so he’s the first media accredited NBA person on Twitter.

SEAN: Yeah, so the first day he was tweeting for Sir John’s and then he was doing it for the Knicks and then from looking at Major League Baseball, the San Francisco Giants, Bryan Srabian or @srabe on Twitter. He’s done a really good job with the Giants, for what he’s done with the MLB, but really the gold medal in SportsBiz goes to Darren Rovell who will tweet all kinds of sports news all the time. He’s got his own show on CNBC, the new NBC Sports, covering all sports biz, so if you want to know what’s happening, he actually just said that MSG, Time Warner Cable Deal has finally gone through. He said there was lintervention that made it happen because the cable network had been out of not showing Knicks’ games

FRANK: So if you were in New York you couldn’t watch Jeremy Lin?

SEAN: No one’s been able to watch Jeremy Lin. The ratings have been going off, so obviously that’s caused a bit of pressure and now they’ve done a deal, and they’ve obviously accredited Jeremy Lin.

FRANK: There you go, so he’s our gold medalist in the digital podium this week @darrenrovell, all one word @darrenrovell. Follow him and you’ll keep up to date with everything, and the Sports Geek, Sean Callanan, Sean, if people want to follow you on Twitter, as well, where do we find you?

SEAN: They can find me, @SeanCallanan or at @SportsGeekHQ on Twitter or sportsgeek.com.au. And they’ll find everything we’re doing.

FRANK: And you’ll find out his Pinterest board with all his cupcakes as well.

SEAN: Yes and all the sports teams that are starting to use Pinterest as well. So we’ve even got a board for
that.

FRANK: There you go. Thanks again for coming in, mate. We’ll catch you again next week.

SEAN: No worries, thanks Francis.

FRANK: Sean Callanan our Sports Geek talking about sport and the digital media here on Grandstand Breakfast. Hope your Saturday morning is shaping up nicely.

The Linfographic! Jeremy Lin story explained #linsanity

Isn’t it awesome when a social media phenomenon is presented as a Infographic?

We present the #Linfographic, documenting the #linsanity around Jeremy Lin.

Sports Geek Update

A great story about this infographic, after we blogged about it after finding it at Infographics World.  It has completely blown up on Pinterest – check out the Linsanity board

We connected Justin at Infographics World just to say thanks & get some more info on getting more cool sports infographics developed.

Additionally we knew Jonah Ballow (@jonahballow) was in the middle of Linsanity (we worked with Jonah at the Timberwolves) so we made sure he knew about the Linfographic.

Justin chimed in to offer

And in a few hours time it was up on KnicksNow.com

After all the tweets & emails finished it was good to connect Justin & Jonah and find out Justin is a Knicks season ticket holder!

Just shows our motto “connecting sports, fans & sponsors using technology” is alive and well as it took Sports Geek in Melbourne Australia to connect the New York Knicks with a talented infographic artist who is based in New York & a huge Knicks fan.

Definitely demonstrates that the sports digital world is a small world after all & the sports digital revolution is definitely upon us! Congrats to Justin, you can now find the #Linfographic on ESPN as well our friends at SportsNetworker.

If you haven’t seen it by now here it is…

The Journey of Jeremy Lin
Source: Infographic World

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