How social media can bring our footy stars closer than ever

You can be connected to your favourite sports team both at the game and online. Using social media is becoming more and more important to raising a rugby league players profile – although it does come with risks,  recent news stories featuring players indiscretions displayed online are becoming more and more common.

However there are many positives.

Lets look at they ways in which social media helps our footy stars.

  1. Building the brand of each player helps get them much-needed exposure. Let’s face it, being a rugby league player at the highest level can bring 10-15 years shelf life. During that time sponsorship can bring additional income, and social media can raise a players profile -both in positive and negative ways.
  2. Many players have their own Twitter profile which provides followers with up to date news feed on their training and social outings between games. You no longer need to wait for game day to see your favourite player – a continuous stream of pictures and posts are available for you to read anytime you like.
  3. Preparation for post-footy life. Social media brings out a players personality. Those that are well suited for commentary or regular media spots are more likely to also shine online – having a social media profile can help get players these kind of roles once they hang up their boots for good. Nothing like preparing for retirement.
  4. Fan posts can make or break you. Players that are attentive with fans, take time to stop, take photos and sign autographs, will have their good deeds spread via social. Conversely irritated fans use social media to air their grievances if players are not performing, leave for other clubs, or worse still, as a means to bully or post harsh  comments.
  5. Many clubs including Canterbury Bulldogs, use social media to connect with fans and provide live score updates during each game, and to raise the profile of community work and fan initiatives.
Ben Barba experiences alleged racial slur via social media – photo courtesy of

How do you think social media is helping bring our footy stars close to fans?

Hashtags now work the way they were meant to on Facebook

Hashtags have arrived on Facebook.

As mentioned on The Social Media Hat, Facebook recently made an announcement that they will be rolling out the feature to users in the coming weeks. Up until now hashtags appeared as plain text in Facebook and were not able to be used to group search results by keyword or topic.

Hashtags now work the way they were meant to. Enter hashtags in the search bar
Hashtags now work the way they were meant to. Enter hashtags in the search bar

What this means

When you type a search by keyword or hashtag (for example #stateoforigin) in the Search bar in Facebook it groups together all the public posts from Facebook Pages and Profiles into one search listing – you need to make sure the hashtag already exists, so once you see someone use a hashtag you can click on it or type a new search. You can also find hashtags that are trending on Twitter or Google +.

What about my private posts, will they show up when someone searches using a hashtag?

In short no. Any posts that you set to private or viewable only by your Friends, will continue to be only viewable by your network. Only Public posts will appear when someone you don’t know searches on Facebook using a hashtag.

Try it today and see how it helps you find out what fellow Facebook users think about a particular topic or event.


To Tweet or not to Tweet – Getting started on Twitter

Want to know more about Twitter and what all the fuss is about? Best thing to do, is just sign up and listen. Or in this case, read. By reading like minded people’s tweets you will soon find out if it is something you want to add to your daily social media consumption.

Sign up here. Choose a username, this represents your Twitter Handle which is what comes after the @ symbol and what others can look up to find and follow you. Mine is @antoninac

Twitter now contains a step by step walk through to get you started. Find people to follow by typing in names of your friends, Twitter handles if you know them or even brands that you love. News channels are also great to follow as often news stories break on Twitter BEFORE the TV news programs pick them up. Following celebrities is a popular thing to do on Twitter. Justin Bieber has more than 36 million followers. If you are a Believer of the Biebe, go for it. A host of other celebrities are on Twitter and you can preview a sample of their tweets before you choose to hit the golden Follow button.

Choose a profile picture that represents you or your brand. This will appear next to all your tweets so make sure it is easy to identify and in good taste.

Once you finish step by step set up visit your feed. This lists all the posts/tweets made by the people you follow. If you would like to share one, it is called a retweet. You can do this by hitting the Reweet button:


This automatically adds a RT at the start of your message and adds the persons Twitter handle so you are crediting that persons work. After all you can’t take credit for someone else’s tweet!

When you are ready to share a thought with the world you can post your own tweet.


Hash tags are used to group similar tweets together by topic. Click on. Hash tag and a feed of all tweets will pop up. Add a hash tag which you can create simply by typing in #addyourtopic at the end of your tweet. Or look at trending topics on the left side bar of your Twitter page or under the ‘Discover’ section of the Twitter iphone app.