So far, IPL seasons have not brought good news for Kings XI Punjab. The team has repeated its sad story of dismal performances on the ground. This is a story we all know everything about, but what I am going to talk about in this article is not known to all. By the time we will be through with our journey, you will know how strongly or poorly did Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) performed on social media, how strong or weak their social media strategy is.
Tools of Engagement
Like Every other IPL team, Kings XI Punjab is present on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, but a consistent branding effort is clearly missing from these social media websites, where each profile looks different from the other. Even the nomenclature used is not very consistent. If on Facebook it is Kings XI Punjab Official Fan Club then on Twitter it is Kings XI Punjab and on YouTube it is Kings XI Punjab TV. It holds true for the URLs as well. Let’s move forward and see how KXIP uses various social media tools.
The first look at the Facebook page of KXIP gives sense of warmth oozing out from its red cover image and profile picture. And when you move downward, you will see the ‘about’ section, which is verbose. KXIP has entirely wasted this space, and a look towards the right on the app tabs will confirm that. It sends a message that the fan page has been under-optimized.
It appears that proper measurements of the thumbnail images for app tabs have not been taken, as the thumbnails fall way shorter than they should. The placement of apps is also not proper on the fan page. “Photos” and “Likes” tabs should have been replaced by “Fan Downloads” and “Fan of the Week” tabs.
KXIP has put some efforts in using various features of Facebook, which is evident from the tabs, but improper use of real estate and scattered resources has made it ineffective.
The team has used Facebook to update fans with the semi-live reports of the ongoing match, which looked, at best, irritating to me because Twitter could have nicely done this job.
The updates are quite creative and KXIP has nicely used all the features of Facebook timeline. Kings XI Punjab has properly used images, cartoons, texts, and videos to engage its fans, and also partnered with Godrej to spread consciousness about energy conservation, which is novel concept for an IPL team.
It is good to see that KXIP has not stopped its Facebook activities even after its failure to qualify for the semi finals. In fact, post match updates got more likes and comments than the ones posted during the series.
The team kept its fan engaged by sharing positives from the series, which will pull visitors in the next season.
The branding of KXIP on Facebook fan page is not proper. If the cover image says Team KXIP, the URL says Kings XI Punjab fan club, and the about section reads Kings XI Punjab Official Fan Club.
In total, KXIP has 35,643 fans, of which 9,651 are actively engaged with the page, which is a very high percentage.
Hash Tags: #KXIP
When you land on the Twitter page of KXIP, the first thing you see a profile with all-white background with repeating logo of the team, which in itself is not bad, but when seen from the branding point of view, the inconsistency pops out. But when you look beyond the obvious branding flaw, you will see some real engagements.
Twitter followers of KXIP are more engaged with the team than fans of any other teams reviewed so far.
Followers, despite their team’s defeat, are not angry with the team; instead, they are supportive of the team and wished them luck for the next season
There are lots of retweets happening and replies are sent from the team to its fan, which has kept the fans engaged. KXIP and its fans played like a team on Twitter.
In total, the team has 30,177 Twitter followers, many of which are actively involved in the discussion with the team.
As far as video goes, KXIP has created some very unique and powerful content, but it failed to capitalize on it. KXIP has not used YouTube to the fullest. There has not been any significant effort to utilize videos to engage its audience despite having some very engaging content. For example, it has a very nice insider video of the cheerleaders, but because of the lack of proper promotion, view count remains low.
KXIP has some of the most powerful video content created by any team, in fact, only the video content of Mumbai Indians can come closer to KXIP’s content, but it has failed to make most of it. It also had some nice fan as well as behind-the-scene videos, but again the story is all the same.
The premise of social media activities of KXIP had a lot of potential. The strategy also looked good, as it is evident from the kind of content it had created and contests the team hosted, but Kings XI Punjab lacked the punch in the execution. The team failed to properly use the content it had.