As a former NFL Vice President/General Manager with the Minnesota Vikings and former President/COO of the Tennessee Titans, I have seen the growth of social media from its infancy to where it is now a major force and vehicle for sports teams at all levels–from the professional sports leagues–major and minor leagues in all sports– to major colleges, small colleges, high schools and club sports.

It’s truly remarkable to see the capabilities of social media vehicles such as Facebook and Twitter to be utilized by teams as one of their key components and strategies for connecting directly with their fan bases and for their sponsors to integrate into this effort.

For NFL teams and all other teams, their social media endeavors enable them to communicate directly with their fan base and not rely on more traditional media such as newspapers, TV and radio to get their public relations messages sent on team activities and community relations/charitable endeavors along with their critical marketing messaging on ticket sales, suite sales, sponsorships, etc.

As the next evolution on the social media horizon, I’m excited to be involved with Huzzah Sports which is an innovative and exciting company that is changing how professional sports teams, college teams and grassroots teams produce their social media feeds to their fan bases on game day and throughout the year.

Huzzah enables all teams to social cast their games on Facebook and Twitter, easily integrating into their existing feed and simplifying the efforts of club managers to engage with their loyal fan base. Live scores, player profiles, news stories, club messages, live weather forecasts, stats, video clips, game analysis–the possibilities for fan engagement are limitless via Huzzah.

Huzzah also is a terrific vehicle for teams to increase revenue by giving sponsors immediate access to a team’s fan base and capitalizing on the multitude of fan interaction opportunities. Sponsors appreciate Huzzah’s ability to improve the quality of fan interaction. And from a team perspective, this in turn drives ticket sales and team merchandise purchases along with the increased sponsorship dollars.

Today’s sports fans expect a team to be able to bring them inside the huddle and close to the action via social media so they can really feel like they’re in the know and always having the most current information including real-time game day access to live action, instant replays of key plays in the game, outstanding graphics and the latest team info on roster changes, injury updates and all team activities on and off the field, court, ice,  pitch or whatever the venue. In turn, this immediate and constant access is exceedingly attractive to potential team sponsors and partners.

Huzzah’s pricing is extremely affordable for all teams–large and small, high revenue and those just hoping to break even.

It’s truly mind-boggling for a pro sports veteran such as myself to see the amazing capabilities of Huzzah and its advanced content management and posting tool Thinking-Sports. It’s a far cry from my first NFL season in 1976 when I was assistant PR Director for the Vikings and when we went to the Super Bowl that season, our fan communication was limited to direct mail (snail mail as we now call it) and hoping the Twin Cities newspapers and TV and radio stations correctly disseminated our team info. Today via Huzzah, the precise messaging will be communicated instantaneously.

It’s an incredible evolution with Huzzah now at the forefront, playing the role of social media manager to be a major help in growing fan bases, disseminating team information and increasing sponsorship engagement and revenue for teams at all levels.