Next spring, the Hartford Yard Goats hope to develop a solid fan base for minor league baseball, but already, the team is trying to lure people in their 20s and 30s who might think the Yard Goats are edgy and cool because of what they put on Facebook and Twitter.
"Throw a contest out there and get people talking," said Mike Abramson, senior vice president for sales and marketing, "because the way that we grow it is the more people that retweet and share and answer questions, all of their people see it in their feeds."
He expected big interest in a contest to guess the closing figure for the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Much of what he tweets from @GoYardGoats, in fact, has nothing to do with baseball.
It could be there's something other than work going on in the offices of downtown Hartford, because Abramson has found so much response on Twitter and Facebook.
"Twitter's a little bit more sarcastic and fun and iffy and Facebook is more long form. Facebook is to email as Twitter is to text," he explained.
He said customers who walk into the office on Trumbull Street for Yard Goats shirts want to know who does the social media. That would be Abramson, who has already learned people respond most when he posts as though the team were just one person. So he types "I" and "my," not "we" and "our," on social media.
"I don't know that anybody's really figured out how to monetize it yet, but it gives you a chance to talk to your audience and create a voice for your brand in the way you want to create a voice," he said.