Some of my fondest childhood memories include sitting on my grandma’s steps listening to the cars speed around the track at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS). Being raised in the Racing Capital of the World allowed me to attend numerous Indianapolis 500 races, ultimately influencing my passion for the racing industry and everything it entails.
When I studied sports marketing in college, I became actively involved in the motorsport industry. During my sophomore year, I joined a race team as a marketing and public relations intern. A major part of my role was running all of the team’s social channels and helping with events at the IMS, a task that I took on with great excitement. Upon graduation, I was hired at an agency that was affiliated with racing and sponsorship within racing. My primary responsibilities included managing all social accounts for our racing clients, executing deliverables, and event activation.
When thinking about racing, you might not associate a team’s success with social media. However, social media integrates the members of the team and connects them to the community. Throughout my career, I’ve noticed that social media is a crucial tool for the growth of any team. In this blog post, I’ve outlined the key impacts of effective social media on the motorsports industry and how it can help support racing teams.
Managing social media for any race team or sponsor affiliation means that you’re responsible for keeping your audience aware of what’s going on. Whether your driver won pole position or crashed, fans want to know what is happening around the clock.
More people than ever visit social media platforms to receive their news. It’s important to keep up with the speed of racing by delivering information faster than TV reporters can. At all times, we have drivers and pit stand reporters in our ear, making current information accessible to us so that we can give updates. Having this access is pure bliss from a social media management standpoint – we don’t have to chase down information when it naturally comes across our path.
Interacting with your fan base is key, especially since the IndyCar Series has one of the best fan bases in sports. And through social media, we have tons of ways to interact with our fans: driver autograph sessions, meet and greets, giveaways, and garage tours. With all of these opportunities comes a lot of content, as well as free exposure from fans capturing and sharing their special moments. Everyone loves to be in the know and feel that they’re part of the action. Social media gives us the opportunity to open our team to the fans in a way that couldn’t have happened even five years ago.
In addition to creating more opportunities for fan interaction, social media plays an important role in allowing the team to build other relationships. One vital aspect of racing is corporate sponsorship. Our biggest point of connectivity is giving fans the opportunity to build relationships with our sponsors. For instance, if a hotel brand is a sponsor, we can promote the hotel and give fans the opportunity to show their support by staying at the hotel. It’s through organic opportunities like these that fans can support all of their team’s efforts. Racing is a family event – by connecting with your team, you help it succeed.
At the end of the day, the racing world is constantly moving at a fast pace, and it’s my job to stay up to speed. When you bring awareness to your team, interact with fans, and connect your fans to everything you’re doing, you’ll understand how social media brings value that you can’t buy in the racing world.