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Embed a Twitter Feed on your Website

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Does your organization or team use Twitter?  It is a great way to interact with your members and participate in the sports community! You can create a custom widget on your TeamPages site where you can embed a Twitter feed.  This can help you get more followers on Twitter and give your website visitors access to your tweets!

Twitter makes it really easy to embed a page feed or any kind of post on your site, all you need to do is copy and paste a few lines of code. Lets get started!

First, you need to login to TeamPages and you must have administrative access to your TeamPages website.

1. Navigate to your settings area.TeamPages Embed Facebook Feed

2. Go to the ‘widgets’ settings and click ‘add’ in the top right corner.TeamPages Embed Facebook Feed

3. Name your new custom widget and change the text editor to ‘source’ mode.  This mode is for entering code instead of plain text.
TeamPages Embed Twitter Feed

4. Copy this code, replacing the YOURTWITTER with your twitter handle, and YOUR NAME with the name of your team or league. 

<p><a class=”twitter-timeline” data-height=”500″ href=”https://twitter.com/YOURTWITTER“>Tweets by YOUR NAME</a> <script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script></p>

For example, TeamPages’ code would look like this:

<p><a class=”twitter-timeline” data-height=”500″ href=”https://twitter.com/teampages“>Tweets by TeamPages</a> <script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script></p>

6. Paste this code into your ‘source’ area. Save your custom widget.
TeamPages Embed Facebook Feed

7. In the widget settings, turn your widget on and choose the column you would like it to display in on your home page. Click save.
TeamPages Embed Facebook FeedTeamPages Embed Facebook Feed

8. Go to your home page and see your new widget!  You may need to drag it around on the page to position it in the right spot.

I hope this has been a helpful TeamPages tutorial.  Please comment if you have any questions or email us at support@teampages.com, we are always happy to help!

4 Quick Tips for Sports Clubs Using Social Media

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You’ve seen them splayed out on just about every notable brand’s webpage, ads, and flyers: the little Twitter bird, the infamous Facebook “f”, and the Instagram lens looking right at you. Whether it piques your interest enough to check out their social media pages or you just find them annoying, the statistics don’t lie: they’re working. The average social media user maintains 5 accounts and 96% of small business owners/marketers use social media marketing.

Social Media

So what does this have to do with your child’s club? Why would understanding social media marketing really make a difference to the local youth sports club or league you volunteer with? First of all, the club or league you manage is very similar to a brand. Parents interact online and need to see that their child’s team is one that can be respected and trusted. Building a strong brand is as important to the club’s success as the people who run it. In a time when media is consumed by anyone at any time on computers and mobile devices, it is essential to maintain a strong online image and engage with stakeholders that expect their child’s league to answer any questions or concerns they may have. By extension, maintaining an excellent online presence will drive new and repeat registration to keep the club prosperous for future generations. In the end this is really our goal: to ensure that our children play in a thriving, adaptable club without worrying that it may fold or lose credibility.

Secondly, attracting sponsors is key to raising funds to cover extra costs associated with the club and to help lower registration costs. However too many parents and marketing committees approach sponsorship in the same way they approach fundraising; simply asking a business for it. I’ve seen many sponsorship request letters explaining to the business where the money will go, how it helps the children, and how much everyone at the organization appreciates it. Goodwill alone may account for a portion of the sponsor’s decision to invest, but it would be naive to assume they expect no financial return on their investment. They want to know that their exposure will reach enough people to make a return on the (possibly) thousands of marketing dollars they’ll spend on you. What better way to do this than to give them something measurable and quantifiable such as number of Instagram followers or Facebook likes, or even better, levels of engagement.

So how do you keep the members of your social media platforms not only growing but also engaging with your club? I’ve listed a few things to keep in mind while you’re posting and updating your pages:

1. Keep things visual. It is tempting to share lots of text posts and links with your followers along with images, but ultimately people process and engage more with pictures and visual content. Check out this article by Social Media Today to learn more about getting visual on social media.

2. Post frequently, but not too frequently. Parents will follow your social media accounts because it will show them important information, notable team achievements, and the occasional bit of humour and/or informative links. However, don’t fall victim to thinking everything you come across related to the sport must end up on the page.

3. Make sure all important info is posted as soon as possible to all outlets. Even when using your league communication tools, it is still good practice to inform parents of all venue changes, rain-outs, etc., through social media.

4. React to concerns as soon as possible. It has become very commonplace for parents to voice their concerns on a forum where they know they will have the most exposure: your social media pages. Respond to disgruntled tweets and posts as soon as you can and with complete diplomacy in your tone. Ensure an immediate solution and offer further discussion elsewhere than the page.

It is very easy to fall behind on the social marketing aspect of your club while focusing on other important areas (you know, such as actually PLAYING the game!), but you must keep in mind the value of interacting with people on these platforms. What might just be a quick update to you may be the highlight of a soccer/hockey/football mom’s day. The power of social media in youth sports is growing parallel to that of the largest companies out there. Keeping your club in the forefront of social media today will ensure its success, and more importantly the success of your children, tomorrow.

For information on setting up your facebook page, check out this article by BufferSocial’s Kevan Lee.

The benefits of physical activity & exercise as medicine

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I once worked in a cardiac rehab program at a hospital. One day a man whom I had treated for a couple months came up to me and thanked me for everything I had done and said something I will never forget. In short what he said was “My daughter is getting married in a month and I will be walking her down the aisle, something that would not have been possible two months ago”. Have you ever heard the saying “exercise is medicine”? Contrary to what you’re probably thinking, I did not work as a nurse or other medical volunteer, but rather as a kinesiologist prescribing him exercises specific to the capabilities of his heart following surgery. Every week he got stronger and was capable of more, and through a simple exercise program his quality of life was drastically improved.

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It is widely known that exercise is good for the body but what you may not have known is that it also benefits our mind and mood, and recent research also indicates that it helps us retain information. It can improve our day-to-day lives and improve our overall sense of well-being by energizing our mood, helping relieve stress and anxiety, improving our quality of sleep, and helping us manage symptoms of illness and pain. Read more

How to size an image for the TeamPages news slider

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The TeamPages news slider is one of the most dynamic ways to add content to your website and share your message with your visitors.  Whether you use it to communicate important announcements, celebrate team wins, or highlight individual player achievements, the news slider makes a huge impact.  

Today we will be demonstrating how to size an image for your news slider.

The recommended image size for the slider is 750 pixels wide by 500 pixels tall, this is a horizontal rectangle that fits perfectly into the news slider box.  If you upload an image with different dimensions, it will not fill the whole news box.  Check out the examples below.

On the left we have an image properly sized at 750 by 500, and on the right we have an image sized at 800 x 600 (a tall rectangle).  You can see that white space is added on either side of the tall image.

TeamPages News Slider

You do not need to have software on your computer the properly size an image, we will be using resizeimage.net for the demonstration.  It is a free online tool that allows you to upload, resize, and save an image for your website!

When possible, select horizontal images for your news slider.  If you have a vertical image you want to use, the best thing to do is crop it down to size.  Don’t be too afraid to cut off arms and legs to make this happen, it often creates an even more dynamic image, making you feel like you are right in the action!

Follow these steps (as shown in the video above):

  1. Upload your image to resizeimage.net
  2. Check the ‘fixed aspect ratio’ box and enter the dimensions (750 x 500)
  3. Add the width and height to get a selection box on your image
  4. Drag the corner of the box out and move the box around to position your image for cropping
  5. Select ‘crop’
  6. Scroll down and enter the dimensions again in the image resize area
  7. Scroll all the way to the bottom and click ‘image resize’
  8. Once properly sized, download your image!
  9. If you do not know how to put the image into the news slider, check out this help article.

We hope this tutorial has been helpful!  Subscribe to the blog for more tips on using TeamPages and managing a sports team, club, or league.

New Integration with USA Hockey Registration

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USA Hockey LogoWe know how much time it can take to have to manually look up hockey membership numbers, verify them, and then push players through the registration process. That’s why TeamPages has teamed up with USA Hockey to integrate our registration and association management software.

Now you don’t have to lift a finger—online registration syncs up with USA Hockey’s database to instantly verify and approve memberships, letting your players complete their USA Hockey registration in one smooth, fast process.

How does it work?

  1. Add verification in registration request. When you are putting together your TeamPages Registration form, simply select that you’d like to include USA Hockey verification in your registration sign up form.
  2. Prompt included in your registration form. When athletes (or parents on their behalf) are signing up for the season, they will be prompted to enter in their valid USA Hockey Member Number.
  3. Verification completed. We’ll validate that the membership is active and valid. If it is, they will be able to complete the registration. If it isn’t, they’ll receive a notification that they need to get an active membership to continue to register.

Learn More

Learn more about registration and member verification services by scheduling a call with a TeamPages representative through our Club and League Overview page: www.teampages.com/club_overview.

8 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your League Volunteers

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1. Respect

Be understanding when volunteers miss a day and be sure to recognize their return to the project afterward. Remember, volunteers are participating out of the goodness of their hearts and no amount of respect and admiration is too much. volunteer meeting

2. Praise and recognize accomplishments

Volunteers rarely give their time to receive recognition, however that shouldn’t stop you from heaping on the praise when you get the chance. Whether this praise is public or private, it doesn’t cost you a dime and can pay dividends over the course of a season.

Note, the end-of-season banquet is great opportunity to thank and commend all the parents who willingly gave their time and energy toward making the swim team experience better for everyone. A heartfelt thank you really goes a long way and will improve your chances to have them return next season. Read more