The Summer of Ovi has come to the end and the NHL is officially back in our lives.
Throughout the offseason, several of hockey’s top players took to social to further establish their brands beyond the ice. The biggest winners were Caps players, specifically Ovechkin and TJ Oshie, who captured the momentum of their Stanley Cup win and shared the experience with their audience.
As a whole, the NHL’s stars are outpaced by their peers in major sports including the PGA TOUR and NFL in terms of audience size, activity, total engagements, and growth. However, NHL players have one of the most actively engaged audiences in sports. Hockey fans love to interact with their favorite players, but that content can be few too few and far between.
That may be about to change in a big way. Last season, the New Jersey Devils adopted an athlete-driven strategy that produced league-leading success for the team and its players. As more teams follow suit, and players like Ovechkin, Oshie, and Taylor Hall show a commitment to giving their fans more access, look for hockey to climb the ladder for athlete-driven performance on social.
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It’s been 13 years….and now me and my boys are Stanley Cup champions!!!! I wanna say thx to George McPhee and all scouts who draft me, Ted Leonsis who and his family make me feel like at home right away! all my teammates, all staff,but i wanna say i’m very happy for all caps fans! we did it!!!!! and now i wanna say thx to my family….without u i never reach this cup and all my trophies. mommy daddy and my brother michael with your support and believe in me i feel your energy and emotion,to help me be who i am!!! all my friends who are with me all time, my trainer thank you. most important i want to thx my beautiful wife @nastyashubskaya for support and love for always helping me every single day. i love you very much!!! now we can celebrate all together and remember this moment for all our lives. time to party caps fans!!!! because its the cup????. #stanleycap #ALLCAPS
The NHL’s athlete-driven MVPs
Below is the performance analysis for the NHL’s 25 most-followed players on social. We break down the data by audience, activity, engagement, and growth on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram from June 8, 2018, to October 2, 2018.
These are the NHL’s strongest brands on social.
*min 16 posts (1/week)