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Courtesy: JMUSports.com
JMU Athletics Rolls Out Rebranded Social Media Portfolio
Courtesy:JMUSports.com Release:08/29/2013
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HARRISONBURG, Va., Aug. 29, 2013 – Building upon an already successful presence, James Madison Athletics on Thursday unveiled new initiatives to enhance its social media presence with a common JMUSports naming structure and increased focus on representation for all sports.

JMU Director of Athletics Jeff Bourne noted, “Our social media presence is as comprehensive as you’ll find at any non-BCS level institution in terms of quality of updates, number of platforms and user engagement. That said, this rebranding effort demonstrates that social media is a constantly-evolving technology, and we are determined to remain at the forefront of that evolution.”

The rebranding effort was built around two key components: 1) identifying the social media platforms which best fit the strategic communication goals of JMU Athletics and titling them under one common name (@JMUSports) while 2) providing a supported Twitter presence for each of JMU’s 18 sports programs.  The department will also continue to monitor other emerging technologies that fit strategic niches within the social media portfolio.

Content for the major social media accounts will primarily continue to be a shared endeavor between the department’s communications and marketing staff with specific focus from the department’s new assistant director of strategic communication, Michael Prior. The Twitter accounts will be a cooperative effort between communications personnel and coaching staffs.

The enhancements will build upon what has already been a successful outreach and engagement presence for JMU Athletics. As of Aug. 20, the department boasted over 8,300 followers on its @JMUSports Twitter account and over 31,000 likes on its JMUSports Facebook account. In one year, the @JMUSports Instagram account has grown to nearly 1,200 followers, including a 50 percent spike in the last month leading up to the new academic year. The @JMUSports Vine account launched in March and has topped 600 followers in just five months.

Nationwide numbers also support JMU’s social media success prior to the rebranding movement. In a Aug. 20, 2013 study of all NCAA Division I institutions excluding the major conferences, JMU’s numbers rated highly among the remaining 240 schools.  JMU ranked 10th in total Twitter followers with 8,313 and fifth in Facebook likes with 31,410. The complete non-major conference top 25 is listed below.

Social Media Accounts (all @JMUSports)

Sport Twitter Accounts

Facebook

@JMUBaseball

Twitter

@JMUMBasketball

Instagram

@JMUWBasketball

Vine

@JMUCrossCountry

YouTube

@JMU_FieldHockey

Pinterest

@JMUFootball

 

@JMUMGolf

@JMUWGolf

@JMULacrosse

@JMUMSoccer

@JMUWSoccer

@JMU_Softball

@JMUSwimDive

@JMUMTennis

@JMUWTennis

@JMUTrackField

@JMUVolleyball

Social Media Rankings of Non-Major Division I Programs

Athletics Facebook

Total Likes

Ranks

Athletics Twitter

Followers

Montana

79,349

1

Texas State

15,689

North Dakota

53,794

2

Ohio

13,167

Army

43,338

3

Appalachian State

10,811

Gonzaga

36,630

4

Gonzaga

10,023

James Madison

31,410

5

Navy

9,346

North Dakota State

27,405

6

Army

9,039

Wichita State

22,127

7

Harvard

8,930

Hawaii

21,709

8

Boston University

8,746

Navy

21,122

9

Georgia Southern

8,693

Akron

19,495

10

James Madison

8,313

Idaho

16,534

11

Wichita State

7,991

Louisiana-Lafayette

16,354

12

Hawaii

7,950

Missouri State

16,144

13

Illinois State

7,911

Louisiana Tech

15,629

14

Dayton

7,894

Western Carolina

13,897

15

Delaware

7,870

Illinois State

13,761

16

Georgia State

7,751

UTSA

13,701

17

Missouri State

7,749

Youngstown State

13,481

18

Western Kentucky

7,632

Ohio

12,829

19

Louisiana-Lafayette

7,614

Rhode Island

12,605

20

Bowling Green

7,386

Georgia Southern

12,516

21

Montana

7,285

Georgia State

12,393

22

Miami (Ohio)

7,120

Southern Illinois

12,296

23

Cornell

7,090

Northern Illinois

11,962

24

North Texas

6,960

Murray State

11,479

25

Liberty

6.641

*All Data as of August 20, 2013. Rankings exclude the following: American, ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Mountain West, Pac-12, SEC, schools transitioning to those conferences by 2014, Notre Dame and BYU. Representatives of other athletic departments wishing to see their position within the entire rankings may email socialdukes@jmu.edu.

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