Steelers, Stars, and Seminoles Lead the Way in Latest SMSeven

By: Parth Shah, @shah_parth_

The Steelers are one of many teams continuing to excel on social media, as the Black & Gold push towards an AFC Championship Game appearance vs. the Patriots. Lead Image Credit: @Steelers

The Steelers are one of many teams continuing to excel on social media, as the Black & Gold push towards an AFC Championship Game appearance vs. the Patriots. Lead Image Credit: @Steelers

Welcome to another edition of the Social Media Seven, your weekly home for all things social media in the world of sports. Want to join in on the conversation and have some input on next week's article? Share your favorite content with the hashtag #SMSeven and keep the discussion going all week long! Without further ado, let's get started!

1. Juventus FC

When the 9th most valuable soccer club in the world moves to rebrand its identity, heads are sure to turn. Italy's Juventus FC, a Champions League powerhouse that plays in Serie A, made the decision to unveil a new team logo and brand identity that modernizes the organization, while sticking true to its roots and heritage.

Such a drastic course of events can cause friction within the community and send waves throughout the sport, but credit to the social and PR teams for Juventus who were up to the task.

The club prepared some fantastic videos detailing the transition to the new "modern" look, and began to push its Black & White initiative. Reactions to the new design were mixed, as expected, but Juventus did a really great job at providing reasoning for the move, creating behind-the-scenes content, throwing a strong reveal party, and completely owning the new look from the beginning.

I give them credit for having the conviction to try something so bold out; it will be interesting to see how the invigorated brand assimilates into the fabric of the club and how long it takes for fans to become comfortable with it.

2. MLB Hall of Fame 2017

Major League Baseball announced its newest Hall of Fame class this week, with three players making the cut amongst a crowded, competitive ballot.

Tim Raines, Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez, and Jeff Bagwell will be immortalized in Cooperstown as the 2017 MLB hall of famers. With such a momentous occasion, the players' respective teams paid homage on social, offering congratulations, well-wishes, and taking a look back at their fantastic careers.

The White Sox, Rangers, and Astros all expressed their gratitude to varying degrees, with strong video content taking fans on a trip down memory lane. The graphics teams also put together really nice designs to commemorate the moment.

Moments like these are a great way to promote your brand, evoke some nostalgia in your fanbase, and celebrate your organization's history. Congrats to the newest HOF class!

3. Dallas Stars

Hockey is a surprising hot-bed in Dallas, and the Stars have done a tremendous job at building a passionate, fun culture amongst the fanbase in Texas. The social media team is always up to the task, with creative content, beautiful GIF work, and fun graphics and videos.

Dallas truly is a first 'star' on social media in the NHL. (Thanks, I'll be here every week! *drops mic*)

In all seriousness, the Stars are a great example of how to find the right balance on social. They provide engaging content and have fun in content and responses, but don't over-do the posting that saturates their hard work.

The starting lineup GIF is neat; I love the idea of using the backs of each jersey because it has an authentic, 'gameday-ready' feel to its presentation.

Lastly, shoutout to the folks in the American Airlines Center who took a shot at our new President and his team on the jumbotron.

For those missing the reference, it's a dig at the White House press secretary who had a breakdown on his first day of work, arguing that the media misrepresented the number of people at President Trump's inauguration. He claims that there were about 1.5 million people there, hence the attendance figure by the Stars' in-arena team. Looks like they won the internet this week.

4. Pittsburgh Steelers

Excitement is high in the Steel City, as the Steelers prepare for their AFC Championship Game matchup in Foxborough against the Patriots. Understandably, this has trickled onto social media, and Pittsburgh has been up to the task.

Engagement on Twitter has been sky-high, as fans are thrilled with the team's big victory against the Chiefs and anticipating the showdown with Brady and Co.

I absolutely love the graphics they've been putting together, because they truly embody the black and gold of the team's brand. Sharp, clean, but bold. Something that every fan can be proud of sharing and conveys the right message.

In addition, I love the idea of creating wallpapers for fans to use, as it offers them an opportunity to express themselves outside of social and connect with the team and brand all week long. 

5. Florida State Seminoles

A school predominantly known for its storied football tradition, Florida State has seen a tremendous rise with its basketball program this season, with an early season performance that has launched the team into the AP's Top 10.

With that comes a noticeable buzz around campus and the state, and even fans across the nation are starting to take notice. I love the video content that FSU is producing; the hype video for their game against Notre Dame is quick, exciting, and utilizes a song from popular culture that also fit the theme of the game - "bounce back" from a loss.

The Full House spoof featuring the team's managers is absolute gold; you'll be hard pressed to find a more creative piece of video content this week, especially because it highlights the managers who may not get the recognition they deserve.

Featuring a video to promote the program is always a smart idea, but taking clips from the legendary Dick Vitale takes recognition to a whole other level, and may sway the more skeptical fan. Exciting times in Tallahassee!

6. Oregon Ducks

Another traditional football school that is excelling in basketball is Oregon. The Ducks have become a big-time player in the Pac-12 over the past few seasons, and continue to turn heads on and off the court.

The creative team for Oregon provides us with fantastic examples of original GIF content that serves a distinct purpose, is easy on the eyes, but looks stunning.

The quality of these graphics cannot be understated, they are truly top class. Pair that with strong video skills and the Ducks are an easy example of how to do visual content right. 

7. Success Tip: Mark Cuban

That's it for this week, folks! Remember to work hard, to pursue your passions, and to make a difference in someone's life, however big or small it may seem. See you all next week!

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