A Look at the #SMSports of the #FinalFour Teams

Brackets have been busted, nets have been cut down, and national championship aspirations for all but four teams have dissipated: the Final Four is here. The four teams remaining — Kentucky, Wisconsin, Michigan State, and Duke — each have longstanding traditions and strong fan bases. They each have impressive social media presences, as well. Let’s take a closer glance to see how the Final Four looks from a social media perspective.

Duke – One of the most well-known NCAA basketball programs in the country, the Duke Basketball social media presence is big on visuals and takes a determined, emotion-tinged approach, reflecting an inspirational brand. Their Twitter is heavy on professional-looking graphics (Facebook is similar, but less busy), and their website does not coincide with the social media aesthetic. But their best network is Duke’s Instagram, which has a strong presence. Their feed is a good combination of graphics, behind-the-scenes-ish photos, and, interestingly enough, more text (in the caption, in this case) than on their social presences.
The #’s –> Duke BB Facebook: 451K fans; Twitter (basketball account): 141K followers; Duke BB Instagram: 233K followers

Michigan State – The Spartans’ social media has a mix of media and post types, including a lot of video (especially on Instagram), images and graphics, and even text and links, alone. Their network also include a lot more explanatory text with their posts than their Final Four peers. Instagram offered a lot of video, a lot of game-related graphics, and became a lot more active once the NCAA Tournament began. Another element that stood out was a more noticeable focus on the head coach, Tom Izzo, than the others. Their website does not mimic the look of their social networks (nor vice-versa!).
The #’s –> 89.5K Twitter followers; 710K Facebook fans (MSU Spartans, not BB only); Instagam (All Sports account): 28.5K

Wisconsin — The Badgers project an air of fun, informality, and a fan-like personality in their social media. Their Twitter and Facebook consists of a lot of non-enhanced photos, primarily of players in-game, with each other, and with fans. Their website is visually appealing and media-heavy, but does not have the same look or feel as their social media presence, for the most part. Finally, their Instagram, while fairly large (on the main athletics account), is mostly duplicates of other social media post content.
The #’s –> Twitter:105K followers; Facebook [main Badgers account]: 823K fans; Instagram (BB only): 44K, 81K (main)

Kentucky — Big Blue Nation are the favorites to win the whole thing and they have a stellar social media presence, as well. Their social media voice exudes a mostly fun tone and posts consist primarily of graphics and photos with little text used in the posts. The copy is short as the Wildcats let the powerful images and fan excitement speak for themselves. Their website echoes this same feel and incorporate a similar style of eye-catching visuals. On Instagram, there is also very little text in the posts, but there is a lot of text on the images themselves, primarily graphics.
The #’s –> Twitter:176K followers; Facebook [BB only]: 356K fans (966K all sport account); Instagram (BB): 50K


So there you have it. No matter which if the four teams are cutting down the most coveted net on Monday night, there will be plenty of social media buzz in the days, hours, and moments leading up it. Enjoy it.

Posted by Neil Horowitz

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