AUSTIN, Texas--(first annual ranking of the most engaged fan bases in the NHL. The ranking, based on an algorithm that evaluates fan activity in terms on home attendance, social media following, average ticket price, and monthly search volume provides a unique perspective as to which NHL fans are the most engaged with their team both online and offline.)--TicketCity, a ticket source for NHL games and NHL playoffs for 22+ years, today announced the
“The teams included on this list have managed to activate their fans in a variety of different ways”
The Toronto Maple Leafs hold the #1 spot on the list with an especially tuned-in fan base. Online search volume for the team is the highest in the NHL with over 300,000 global monthly searches. Home games have long been one of the toughest tickets to acquire even during losing seasons, making Leafs tickets the most expensive in the league. Although slightly less social than other teams included in the top 10, more than 500,000 fans like The Maple Leafs on Facebook- a considerable community when compared to other top global brands.
The enthusiasm of NHL fans on social media is easy to see when compared to other professional leagues like the NFL and Major League Baseball. While the general popularity of other leagues drives more Facebook “Likes” on team pages, Facebook’s “Talking About” numbers reveal that NHL fans are more engaged with their team as fan communities three times their size. The Detroit Red Wings lead all of hockey with over 1.3 million likes on Facebook – including 80,000 fans that are “Talking About” the team on the social network (as of February 15). On Twitter the Montreal Canadiens have the largest reach with over 350,000 followers.
As a "thank you” to fans for putting up with the lockout, many NHL teams have had a multitude of concession giveaways and discounts on souvenir items to draw fans back to the games. The Pittsburgh Penguins -- ranked #3 on the list and #10 in the league for home game attendance -- offered all merchandise available for half-price during the first four games of the season. Fans responded by purchasing 8,680 jerseys and 19,950 t-shirts.
“The teams included on this list have managed to activate their fans in a variety of different ways,” says Rafael Rivas, Chief Strategy Officer at TicketCity. “Whether a fan “Likes” a post on Facebook or decides to attend a game, top NHL teams leverage these experiences to continue to build their fan communities. It’s those experiences that enable certain teams to maintain their success in the league post-lockout, regardless of performance.”
Many of the teams represented on this list will go head to head over the next week looking towards playoffs. The Pittsburgh Penguins, in first place in the Eastern Conference as of February 17, will go head to head against the Pittsburgh Flyers on February 20, in what is sure to be a high-scoring game. Other matchups include tomorrow’s Vancouver Canucks at Chicago Blackhawks, the New York Rangers at Montreal Canadiens (Feb. 23), and the Vancouver Canucks at Detroit Red Wings (Feb. 24).
TicketCity is a trusted source for tickets to more than 75,000 sports, concerts, and theatre events around the world. TicketCity’s established supplier network provides clients with premier access to events including the Masters, Kentucky Derby and US Grand Prix. With on-location staff at all major events, TicketCity’s industry leading customer service is supported by a team of event specialists and a money-back guarantee. Celebrating 23 years in business with 300,000 clients served, TicketCity continues to implement industry best practices, including e-tickets and seat view seating charts. TicketCity was the official sponsor of the 2011 & 2012 TicketCity Bowl at the legendary Cotton Bowl Stadium as well as the 2011 TicketCity Legends Classic. TicketCity has partnerships with 13 championship games, 12 FBS schools and 3 professional teams, as well as media and business organizations such as CBSSports.com, IBM, and BazaarVoice.