The Social 9 with - Kris McDonald
The Social 9 is an up-close look into the lives and careers of the golf industry’s social voices and influencers. Each week will feature a new guest answering nine (or more!) questions about their careers, brands, and personal lives.
These are the voices that drive the industry further every single day.
Kris McDonald — TRUE Sports
Title: Social Media Manager
How did you get started in social media?
While in grad school at KU, I took an internship at the Lawrence Journal-World on its social media team to expand my skill set as a journalism major, it seemed like a sound plan. After week one, I was hooked! I’ve worked in and around social media ever since. I’ve had the good fortune to work with and for some incredibly smart people along the way.
Do you have a favorite social media outlet right now?
Twitter will always be my first love. It can be a very raw look into the mindset and opinions of people and the choices brands make.
Is there ever a struggle to put brand before self or vice versa?
When done right, they should work cohesively together so it’s not a struggle at all. If you work for a brand you truly believe in, the two can easily have a symbiotic relationship. However, the brand will always take precedent over anything I personally do on social media.
How has your content evolved with so much being picture and video centric, rather than just words?
The root of all good content should be storytelling. The way it¹s displayed or presented is simply an avenue for creativity. That hasn’t changed even with the evolution of specific platforms. It¹s our job as marketers to find the best content strategy for each campaign and brand on specific channels. I love digging into data to find how people consume content. Our goal is to naturally fit into the spaces where people are consuming content. There¹s noise volume increases daily so you have to find the best fit for the brand. This will always be a work-in-progress.
How has your role changed as social media has changed?
The core of the role hasn’t changed, but the sophistication of the role has. You’re not just a social media manager; you’re a content and social strategist, paid media specialist, copywriter, community manager, photographer, data analyst, customer care rep, crisis management specialist, influencer manager, relationship builder, inter-department liaison, fire drill captain, etc.
What's the most important thing you want people to know about your brand?
TRUE Sports (recently rebranded from True Temper Sports) has a very long and proud history in the golf industry, but we aren’t just a golf company. With TRUE Hockey, TRUE Sports Lacrosse, AURA Skates and (soon) TRUE Diamond Science, as well as True Temper Golf, Project X Golf and now ACCRA Golf Shafts, we are pushing innovation across a wide variety of sports. This affords us opportunities to learn, grow and perfect our craft through expansive R&D. Our team of engineers work collaboratively to optimize our learnings across each division. For the golf consumer, this means we have the ability to engineer and produce state of the art shafts for a wide variety of player.
Is there a style or a voice you shoot for with your brand's social content?
Approachable, informative and relatable. We understand there are a wide range of golf enthusiasts and we want people to feel comfortable coming to us for information, options and service.
What's your typical work day look like?
I have the opportunity to work across all of our TRUE Sports brands so each day is very different. I don’t have a “typical” work day so each day brings something new. That excitement makes it easy to get up every morning.
What's it like to work so closely with brand ambassadors and pros?
It’s amazing to watch people who are incredibly passionate perform at the highest levels of competition. Each individual is driven by their own purpose and it¹s infectious to be around. This isn’t only reserved for the pros, it’s the teams of people around them who help push their success. Seeing the guys in the Tour trucks and on the range work (I’m biased we have some of the best) is a lot of fun as well.