Monday, 27 October 2014

Can Sky Sports News Influence Social Media in Cricket?

On August 12th, sport channel Sky Sports News underwent a re-branding exercise and became Sky Sports News HQ. Although many saw the change as 'artificial' and 'pointless', there was one development that I believe could have impacts on the social media industry in cricket.

You might think that any changes would affect all sports, but how Sky have adopted social media into their news stories means added significance on clubs getting their social media strategy correct. 

This is what Sky are describing:

"A social media desk will immerse viewers in the newsroom environment as Sky Sports News HQ reporters investigate what’s being said on social media channels. Users will be able to have their say and join the debate via our apps, and social media."
A typical sports story will now often pull tweets from a clubs official social media channel to add credibility, as well as fans and players opinions. The interesting point here is that large footballing organisations are well positioned to take advantage of this, but I believe that cricket (particularly the county game) is not yet knowledgeable of this increased exposure.
It could mean that a mistake on social media will be broadcast to a much wider audience than everyone thinks. The average viewership of Sky Sports News HQ is likely to be higher than followers of most county cricket clubs. It could also be worked in a favourable circumstance, with powerful content from an official account being noticed by Sky and regularly broadcast.  
A small thing? Maybe. But everyone will point to the growth of the digital industry and to why Sky have incorporated this into their strategy, so I believe it is time for county cricket clubs to also get serious when it comes to social media and reap the benefits of increased exposure from an unlikely angle. 

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