The Bradentucky Bombers are the “original flat track roller derby home team of Bradenton, Sarasota, and Venice, on Florida’s Beautiful Gulf Coast.” Currently a league of 40 skaters and three teams, the Bradentucky Bombers are ranked 132 against nearly 500 teams around the world and play local and away bouts monthly throughout the year (with a short off-season period in the winter) to crowds of fans with a passion for the game.
When I joined the league in 2015, their social media was being run by several skaters whose background wasn’t in marketing. They did a great job with what they had, but I knew we could have more fun with the content. While redesigning the website (see case study), I decided that establishing a brand and an online presence would increase fans at games, merchandise sales, and a general increase in revenue overall.
I started with coming up with new, creative content. Over the years, I’ve experimented with video content, custom graphics, and longterm campaigns. I charted analytics and watched what worked and didn’t. Our league went from only utilizing Facebook to incorporating Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat.
Roller derby is a fun, amateur sport. The social media needed to reflect that and memes were a great way to reach a wide audience, while also keeping our brand intact. We rarely use ad dollars to boost our posts, so most of our analytics are organic.
I increased use of video as a way to engage our audience. In one week alone, we had 5,522 minutes viewed. Our videos range from serious roller derby content to funny videos that appeal t a broader audience.
In 4 years, I was able to increase our followers by 150% on Facebook. Our in-person fans at games have increased 166% and our recruitment for league members, new skaters, and volunteers has increased 275%. Nearly all people polled attributed our social media as to how they found us. This increase in revenue has been significant for our league and has allowed us to travel across the country for tournaments, improve our merchandising, and add additional teams to our league.
Every Facebook post averages a reach of 1,000 and over 100 post engagements. With 6,000 fans, this gives our Facebook an average of 10% engagement rate, significantly higher than most amateur sports leagues social media.
We are contacted often from leagues around the world about our social media and how we engage our audience. I’m really fortunate in that my league is game (pun intended) for any viral moment I come up with and that allows our marketing to give us results.