In December when the 2015 NRL Draw was announced, NRL fans across social media were given their first look at the new approach being taken to Official NRL Game hashtags.
If you are wondering why there is a shift from #NRLBriSou to #NRLBroncosSouths – here is Twitter Australia's Head of Sport, Jonno Simpson explaining why Twitter thinks the change is moving in the right direction.
"The revamped match day hashtags provide much more context around who is playing whom, especially for the casual fan," Simpson explains.
"In 2014 a hashtag such as #NRLSGICBY seemed like a jumble of letters with very little context, in 2015 #NRLDragonsBulldogs is instantly recognisable and understood. While they will take up more characters, the context they provide will reduce confusion and increase brand recognition."
While there is an increase in characters used, using #NRLDragonsBulldogs actually saves total characters in a Tweet during a game.
For example, if you used #NRLSgiCby in a tweet, you would need to tag in @NRL_Dragons and @NRL_Bulldogs to explain who was actually playing. Now #NRLDragonsBulldogs does both in one hit and actually saves characters.
From NRL Social's perspective we want to enhance the brand value of our premiership clubs and using three-letter abbreviations did not deliver this.
There have been a few subtle changes to the longer named teams as we know there's still value placed on keeping hashtags as short as possible, while ensuring they're relevant. Because of that, Rabbitohs will be "Souths", SeaEagles becomes "Manly" and WestsTigers uses just the mascot, "Tigers".
With 14 of 16 teams using the mascot as their hashtag and more commonly recognised "Souths" and "Manly" being used, fans will find it easier to join the conversation in 2015 on social media, without the need for a manual to put together the right combination of letters for each team.
And join the daily Rugby League conversation via #NRL
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