When I was starting out in the industry as an NFL draft analyst—with no previous experience—I surveyed at my competition and looked for an area where I could beat them. Six years ago at Bleacher Report we couldn’t compete with the eyeballs ESPN or NFL Network gave to the Mel Kipers and Mike Mayocks of the world, so how would I attempt to carve out my own spot in a niche that doesn’t let in many new faces?
By engaging the fans who are so passionate about the draft.
I built a solid following over the last six seasons by being the analyst fans can go to. I answer their questions. I have fun with their conspiracy theories and weird superstitions. My offline personality is my online personality. By being the approachable analyst in an industry that’s largely full of experts who are not social friendly, I was able to build a brand with roughly 156,000 Twitter followers in a few years.
WHAT IF you engaged your fan base and focused on building a grassroots campaign around your team? College fans are the most passionate and most knowledgeable fans out there, and many live in the backyard of the team they support. Tap into that built-in home field advantage and engage your fans.