Social Media is a powerful way to connect with large groups of people.

According to research young people are spending more time on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram than ever before.

In 2016 77.5% of British Judo members are aged 25 and under so it’s important for judo clubs to cater to that social media savvy generation of current and potential judo players. There is also a growing number of older people that are now becoming active on social media as well.

Getting Started on Social Media

When you’re getting started on social media try to have a think about what you want out of it. For example, are you thinking of using a Facebook page or Twitter profile to update your club’s members on time changes for training sessions? If so then is that the best channel for it? A mass text or whatsapp group may be a more effective option but that’s not to say you shouldn’t include that information on your social media profiles as well.

When it comes to deciding how many social media profiles you have it’s a case of the rifle vs the shotgun. The rifle approach means you pick one or two social media profiles and you focus everything on them. The shotgun approach means you do a bit of everything, have as many profiles as possible and you post as much content as you can across all of them. Managing social media profiles can be time consuming so be realistic about how much time and capacity your club and its committee members can dedicate to social media. 

Posting Content

Social media’s popularity is down to the ease in which users are able to interact with each other – a little humour can go a long way. With this in mind don’t be afraid to try out different things on your social media platforms. Social media trends change quickly so what works well right now may change in a few years or even a few months. You should be prepared to adapt your club’s social media activity and posts.

When it comes to posting content the more visual the better. Posts which include images, graphics or videos are more likely to engage people and will make them remember seeing it. A good example of what can work well when it comes to video content are competition clips especially if they’re showing somebody from your club pulling off a big throw or contest winning technique. Facebook does allow much longer form videos while Twitter, Vine and Instagram are much shorter but again the engagement they will get is much higher than a link to a web report or even a static image.

Considerations

Although there are many advantages for clubs using social media networks there are a few things to consider:

Do’s

Don’ts
Do make sure you engage with your followers Do not post photos without permission (get this in writing if you can)
Do post your club experiences Don’t defame people
Do post pictures from the club and events Don’t violate privacy
Do link your club website to your posts Don’t be obscene
Do look to promote events Don’t use bad grammar
Do follow your clubs principles Do not give out any personal information without permission and under no circumstances any contact information for players Under 18

Live Streaming

A new and exciting aspect of social media is the ability to live stream content via your own social media profiles. For Twitter that means setting up a Periscope account which links to your Twitter profile and streams live video to that account. Meanwhile Facebook have embedded live video as an option across pages and individual profiles. This means that in a nutshell you can almost become an online TV Channel in your own right.

For example let’s say you’re at a big competition like the British Championships and one of your players is in the gold medal contest. You can stream that entire contest live to your club’s Twitter or Facebook account enabling friends, family and supporters who aren’t there on the day to watch the action and feel a part of the day. If it’s streamed on Facebook that video will then stay on your page/profile permanently so people can still go back and watch if they missed it live or if they want to watch it again.