ISM 031: Building a National Brand with Univ of Oregon Ducks’ Craig Pintens - Rick Mulready

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ISM 031: Building a National Brand with Univ of Oregon Ducks’ Craig Pintens

October 13, 2013

craig pintensCraig Pintens, Univ of Oregon Ducks’ Senior Associate Athletic Director/Marketing & Public Relations, is my guest this week on the Inside Social Media podcast, as my journey to connect with the biggest brands in the world and share with you how you can model and adapt their social media insights and strategies continues.

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More About This Show

As you may or may not know, I do a ton of research into the guests that I invite here onto the show.

During my most recent research for guests that I’d like to invite on the show, I came across Craig Pintens’ work with the Oregon Ducks.

Craig and his team have helped turn the University of Oregon Ducks athletic program into a national brand. In fact, their goal is to be THE national brand when it comes college sports.

And, with the help of Nike, they’re definitely succeeding.

Oregon is among the top followed brands in all of college sports on social media. Their following is even bigger than many pro sports teams.

They’re really smart in the way they use social media in that they understand it to be a platform to interact with their fans and build brand value.

In addition, Craig is really well respected in the collegiate marketing world as he’s the president of the collegiate marketing association.

There are a ton of lessons we as small business owners can learn from what Craig and his team are doing with the Oregon Ducks social media.

In today’s show you’ll learn…

  • #1 thing you need to do in order to be successful in marketing your business using social media.
  • We talk about the power of finding influencers and brand advocates outside the immediate circle of your business and how doing so can accelerate the growth of your business.
  • You’ll learn some great tips for using social media to hire people for your business.
  • Craig shares why if you are focused solely on the ROI of social media, you’re destined to fail long term.
  • And of course a whole lot more. Really interesting show today with Craig!

Episode Resources

Connect with the Oregon Ducks on social media:

Connect with Craig on social media: Craig on Twitter – aggregator of content across several channels and can re-purpose the content for you. — find contractors for project work – great for finding people to do voice overs

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INSIDER SHOW NOTES: Oregon Ducks Social Media Tips & Strategies

On Succeeding with Social Media…

  • Define your goal as a company.
  • Social media is an extension of your brand, so include it in your overall marketing strategy. Be consistent and do not put out anything that does not represent your brand well.
  • Social media is a skill that you need to teach yourself how to do. A great way to learn is to watch what successful brands are doing and model them.

On Growing and Keeping your Audience…

  • Go out of your primary circle and look for advocates of your brand. Find influential people that are actively spreading the word about you.
  • Engage with your fans. Make them feel good about themselves because other people can see how you treat your fans/customers on social media.

On the Return on Investment (ROI) of Social Media…

  • Social media is for creating awareness and not making the hard sell.
  • Don’t focus on the ROI. social media is a branding channel not a sales channel. If you’re goal is to monetize social media, you’re missing the boat.
  • There’s a long term ROI on social media.
  • Social is more of a branding channel and can you bring you results long-term.
  • If you are focused solely on the ROI, trying to sell something all the time with your social media, you’re destined to fail long term with social.
  • When you are constantly pushing out your sales messages with social, people are going to unfollow you quickly.

On Creating Content for Your Business…

  • Create great content by knowing what the fans your customers are talking about.
  • For content creation, you can find students who need things for their portfolio or you can go to freelance sites like
  • The internet is a great resource. If you can’t find somebody to do it, teach yourself how to.
  • Sites like and are great sites to hire one-time contractors for projects you’re working on.

On Strategy Media Strategy…

  • Postano is a great tool for aggregating and repurposing content.
  • Research. Find out which channels can help you reach out to a new audience or reach out to your existing audience better. Get as educated as you can and find out what medium is going to work best for you.
  • It’s a good idea to keep up on what’s going on in social media and online by reading sites like Mashable and TechCrunch.  You don’t have to spend a lot of time on these sites, rather, a few minutes per day skimming the latest news can help keep you up on things.
  • If you’re a retailer, Pinterest can help showcase what you sell.  

On the Top 3 Things Craig Would Do Starting Out in Social Media…

  1. Buy and read the book “Thank You, Economy” by Gary Vaynerchuck.
  2. Be perceived as an expert in your field by researching as much as you can about the different areas of your business.  Share content about your field that will help people on the channels that make the most sense for your business and audience.
  3. Don’t just go in to social media just to have an account – go all in.
  4. Learn from the best. Find out what successful brands are doing in social media and online marketing, and apply it to your own business.


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