by TSBX | July 18th, 2012
KAEO The Details:
Founder: George Steiner
Concept: Social network for hockey players and enthusiasts
Email: Email TheHockeyNetwork.com
With the incredible influx of users on large social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, many users are turning to newer niche social media networks, and there are plenty of them to go around. While there are sites dedicate to your dog, your cat, and probably your hamster, George Steiner realized there was no legitimate site dedicated to the sport he fell in love with as a kid, hockey. What was originally rejected as a school project in high school because of the massive scale of the project George was proposing to undertake, has transformed into a full-time entrepreneurial venture and a new social network called TheHockeyNetwork.com.
TheHockeyNetwork.com is a social media network for hockey players, parents, and fans of the game. The website offers forums for user to connect, league and rink information, equipment reviews, junior league information, recruiting tools, a points-based deals platform, and general banter around the game of hockey. It is one part Twitter, two parts Facebook, a little bit of Yelp, and a topping of Groupon. “We’re mashing them all together,” George suggested. One feature that George is very proud of is TheHockeyNetwork.com’s rink database. The database includes a list all of the public hockey rinks in the United States and information on available ice time, leagues, and directions.
Since launching ten months ago, TheHockeyNetwork.com has seen significant penetration with hockey fans. The website has over 4,000 registered unique profiles and over 100,000 unique visitors. George was also quick to point out that the site has 30,000 likes on their Facebook page. At least part of TheHockeyNetwork.com’s early success can be contributed to a media campaign with NHL Network. Many startups don’t have the means to tackle television advertising right away, but thanks to a extremely targeted audience the commercials made their debuts only months after the site launched. Recently, TheHockeyNetwork.com was also in the news for an advertisement it took out in the LA Times responding to a few comments made by the Los Angeles Kings about the New Jersey Devils. The advertisement received national attention. In between the two bigger campaigns, George has been using social media marketing, specifically Facebook, to attract new users, “I simply can’t get the same ROI I get from Facebook from other means of advertising.”
George revealed to TSBX his plans for the future of the website. In the coming months, TheHockeyNetwork.com will launch a scouting portfolio for youth hockey players which he hopes will make it easier for players to be recruited. The profiles will include player information, videos, statistics, awards received, past teams, and other relevant recruiting information. George plans to launch this service in the next few months.
For more information, visit TheHockeyNetwork.com.