While researching the ways that social media is impacting the 2010 World Jr Hockey Championships last night, I happened to see a new Nike commercial called “Destiny”. (Yes….when I’m researching and writing articles, I have hockey on in the background. Can’t get enough of this game….remember!!). At the end of the commercial is a link to http://niketraining.ca. So, naturally, I had to check it out. Here’s what I found:
The link takes you to a landing page promoting Nike’s new marketing campaign titled “We Decide From Here – Force Fate”. The microsite is clearly being used to capture the attention of fans of the Canadian Olympic hockey teams. However, also on this site is a link to a dedicated section covering the 2010 World Jr Hockey Championship. (Here is the direct link to that page: http://www.nike.com/nikeos/p/niketraining/en_CA/force_fate)
As you’ll see on this page, Nike is leveraging social media to provide Canadian hockey fans with coverage from tournament.
- YouTube – video analysis by YouTube star – Steve Dangle (see more about Steve below)
- Twitter – daily coverage of the WJHC including live score updates and links to YouTube videos
- Facebook – coverage of Team Canada, engaging questions, YouTube videos (Nike commercials)
Prominently displayed on the page is a video section titled “Dangle’s Diary”. At first glance, I wasn’t sure what Nike’s angle was in choosing their on-location reporter. However, a little more research and this is what I found about Steve Dangle.
As described by Nike: He’s young, smart, opinionated and a walking, talking Wikipedia of hockey.
He’s also got one of the most respected hockey blogs on YouTube.
He’s Steve Dangle. Click here
Steve Dangle is a popular video blogger that covers the Toronto Maple Leafs and has a loyal following on Leafspace.com. His YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/SteveDangle) has over 260,000 channel views and over 1M video views. Steve also has an entertaining Twitter account (http://twitter.com/StevE_dangle) where he voices his opinion on his favorite team, the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Here are a few of the videos I came across on Steve’s YouTube channel (this kid is hilarious…..love his Don Cherry impressions!)
Hockey Night in Canada Theme Song (Don Cherry impression)
Don Cherry impression – “Canadians Don’t Smile!”
Nike & Steve Dangle
It is apparent that Nike (one of the world biggest brands) has seen the value that social media can add to their marketing strategy. They put a 21 year old kid with a webcam in charge of covering one of the biggest events in Canadian sports. One of the key factors that make social media so impactful is the fact that anyone that is providing good content can generate a loyal following. And, in turn, those social media stars can have influence over the people that tune in to watch their YouTube videos and follow their tweets on Twitter.
Great job by Nike in recognizing that social media is not a fad. By employing Steve Dangle, they generated an instant, engaged audience. And, great job by Steve Dangle in establishing this partnership with Nike. I’m sure it’s a dream come true for him. It’s amazing what passion will get you nowadays!!!