Optimizing Social Media Engagement in Professional Sport: A 3-Year Examination of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter Posts

in International Journal of Sport Communication
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  • 1 Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
  • | 2 University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada
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Although social media has gained significant notoriety, there remains a “missing link” in examining engagement in the sport context. While the why, what, and whom have been explored, the where and when have received considerably less uptake. Accordingly, the purpose of this study was to examine social media engagement for professional sports teams to determine optimal when and where points of user engagement, and the relationship between impressions and engagement. Over two billion data points from 108,124 Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter posts were collected from four professional sports teams between 2017 and 2019. Findings from a regression analysis indicate that both when and where variables significantly predicted impression, and findings from the correlation analysis indicate that impression and engagement are nearly identical. These findings show fan engagement in the context of professional sport teams, prompting scholars to consider the impacts of time and platform, and encourage practitioners to rethink posting on Twitter, the least engaging of the Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter platforms.

Naraine (mnaraine@brocku.ca) is corresponding author, https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9132-1269

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