With the Bruins recent and unexpected early exit from this year’s 2014 Stanley Cup Playoff, myself along with my fellow Bostonians are still mourning the loss. Not only is it a cruel reminder of last year’s loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup finals, it is a long summer for fans and players to contemplate the ups and downs of the series in the summer’s off-season.
But while Zdeno Chara, Tuukka Rask and the rest of our favorite B’s head home for the summer, the Bruins tough-nosed PR team is behind the scene strategizing the media’s unanswered questions while continuing to build the team’s comeback story for next year.
So what does this mean exactly when we consider the day-to-day role of those responsible for the Bruin’s public image? I broke it down into three areas that those who work in PR for other brands should also consider prioritizing when it comes to their own clients:
- Media Relations
With the Boston Bruins early exit from the playoffs, media attention is all eyes on General Manager Peter Chiarelli and Coach Claude Julien for answers. What went wrong? What could they have done differently? What are they changing for next year? Are any of the players hanging up their skates for good?
Dealing with the press, especially after a season ending loss to their rivals, the Montreal Canadiens, is something the Bruins in-house PR team is currently strategically handling. Just because ‘on ice’ time ends for the team, it doesn’t mean a myriad of editorial stories aren’t in development during the off season.
- Social Media
Without Tyler Seguin’s public love for the Boston nightlife on display daily, the Bruins PR team get a break from social media duty, right? Wrong! Social media is an every day task, especially for the players to actively engage with their fans. Not only is the team tweeting and posting on Facebook, they are also active on Instagram building an audience as well as creating hype for Boston’s favorite black and gold team.
Social media is a simple way to control the Bruins story by having a creative, fun way to engage with fans (and to reach their audience of more than 500K followers). With the team in off-season, the PR pros create fresh content to keep the story controlled and exciting, such as getting followers to vote for Patrice Bergeron to be the face of the upcoming NHL 2015 video game.
- Charity Events
Not only is the Bruins PR team working hard for its players, it is working to enrich the surrounding community with numerous charity events, such as the annual Boston Bruins Golf Tourney and Boston Harbor sunset cruise.
Organizing events to raise money for the Bruins Foundation expands the organization’s reach from just an NHL program to a community-wide organization.
The Boston Bruins may get a few months of ‘off-season’ to prepare for next year’s Cup, but those responsible for the team’s public image continue to suit up all year long. Given the media hype for the Bruins during mid summer months when there are no game highlights or performance predictions to pull news from, other PR pros, such as myself, should look to what the team’s representation is doing to keep their client top of mind in both local and national outlets at all times.
Do you keep up with the Bruins even in their off-season?