Arsenal’s social media on point as they manage to make something out of nothing

Arsenal announced the signing of the Bosnian defender Sead Kolasinac in a deal we all knew was coming: the former Schalke 04 player was out of contract and set to sign for Arsenal on a free transfer.

The standard new signing tweet is boring when it only confirms what we already know, but you’d grudgingly agree that it’s necessary. Fans must be engaged, though there’s a limit to exactly how engaging a tweet about an already-known fact can be.

Over the last few months, you get the feeling that running Arsenal’s social media accounts has been a tough job. Fans have been restless, there has been endless speculation about the future of the manager, and some heavy defeats – notably away to Crystal Palace when the Arsenal Twitter account simply stopped live-tweeting the game – have taken their toll. Trying to be positive on the official club account is, ultimately, futile in such a situation; it will probably be counter-productive, too, further enraging angry supporters.

Form has picked up, though, and that might have helped. And when it came to announcing the signing of Kolasinac, Arsenal’s social team were back to their creative best.

Instead of sending the boring-but-necessary #WelcomeKolasinac tweet, they had some fun with the news, creating a ‘quiz’ and cryptically (sort of) announcing the signing through the first names of nine Arsenal signings under Wenger. Kolasinac was the tenth spoken of in the tweet.

In the end, they announced their new signing in the normal way, too, but only after they’d managed to create a buzz around a player that most Arsenal fans knew was joining anyway, managing to squeeze thousands of retweets from arguably the most uninteresting transfer news of the day. Before extending the theme with another short video, this time providing a fairly valuable service to their millions of fans: here’s the man himself telling you how to pronounce his name!

Over the last few months, the club’s digital team have, presumably, gained some invaluable experience in some of the more unseen problems that social media fan engagement can pose. Confirming the signing of Sead Kolasinac, while not a boring transfer in itself, certainly doesn’t lend itself to a social media buzz given it was just confirmation of what we already knew. It’s a great lesson in creating something out of nothing.

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Chris McMullan
Chris McMullan 231 posts

Chris is a sports journalist and a regular contributor to Digital Sport - follow him on Twitter @CJMcMullan91

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