When we released our study of the “Most Engaged” Fan Bases in the NHL post-lockout last season, the results definitely sparked some debate. Everyone has an opinion about who are the best and worst fans in the league, and that’s why we’ve taken a data-driven approach to rank the team’s that do the best at engaging their fans both online and offline. We look at things like game attendance, social media following and ticket demand to determine the final ranking.
Based on the study, we found the NHL has seen huge growth in their communities on social media post last season’s lockout. In fact, the average growth rate in Twitter followers for the league was 56%, with some teams like the Maple Leafs and Blackhawks nearly doubling their follower base over the course of the season. The official Facebook communities for each franchise also experienced growth, although not as extreme (+22% increase in likes).
Who were the “winners”? Coming off a championship year, the Blackhawks made one of the most dramatic jumps in the league, climbing from #7 to #3 on the list. The Bruins also increased their rank from #4 to #2, as a New England region that had been rocked by tragedies rallied around the Bruins during their Stanley Cup run.
And of course, there’s no ignoring the Leafs, who now hold the #1 spot for the second consecutive year. Despite a 46 year championship drought, the Maple Leafs hold the #1 or #2 spot in the league for the most Twitter followers, highest average attendance, and most expensive ticket on the secondary market (average ticket price is $191).
Check out the graphic below to find out where your team ranks, and let us know if the comments if you agree!