With all the buzz online about the NBA free agency, I thought it would a good time to check out the websites of some of the NBA’s top players. How are the big boys presenting their brands? Long after basketball has stopped paying the bills, they’re brands and legacy’s can continue to work hard for them, helping them sell grills, get endorsements, the whole sha-bang. The internet and social media have changed the game. Now that stars have the power to distribute themselves without the help of TV, Radio, and Traditional Media, their brands are in their own hands.
Lebron James started a twitter today that has already reached over 150,000 followers. That built in audience is worth a lot to endorsers and advertisers. This direct connection with fans, translates straight in to dollars. These websites should be used to bring your buzz, spread content, and make it as easy as possible for you’re fans to stay connected. So who’s got professionals working their online identities? Here’s a round up of All Star NBA players’ Official Websites.
Tim Duncan (slamduncan.com)
Slam Duncan, the online home of Tim Duncan is an OK website as far as looks go. The design is a little dated, but it’s held up well. If you’re the coder type, you’ll notice the table based layout and general stale nature of everything. There isn’t any fresh content, blog, Facebook, or Twitter. It’s kind of the typical nice site from a few years back that only gets little updates, no major online presence here.
- Table Based Layout – old design
- Total Lack of Social Media
- Most content is just links to NBA.com
Dirk Nowitzki (41-world.com)
Link: Dirk Noitzki’s Official Website
Dirk Noitzki’s website is …interesting. He loses points for having a 100% flash website, but the real issue I have is the weird puppet of himself that is the background. His arms move while his face and body remain totally still. Freaks me out. There is a blog but no Facebook or Twitter connectivity anywhere to be found. Finally, there is a store where you can get some Dirk Gear, but it looks a little shady to me.
- Up to date blog
- 100% Flash design
- No Facebook or Twitter Connectivity
- Really Creepy Design Concept
Carmello Anthony (thisismelo.com)
Carmello Anthony has a really strong brand presence in his website. He’s got all the social media bells and whistles, and a whole online community where Mello Fans can get together and talk about his awesomeness.
- Flashy, really clean modern design.
- Gear Store
- Lots of Video and Media
- Twitter, Facebook, Blog, all the goodies.
Kobe Bryant (kb24.com)
The NBA’s MVP of 2010’s website is more online store and less online presence. There is a social network where Kobe fans can join and talk to each other, but the website is geared toward selling Kobe Gear more than selling Kobe. It’s a pretty clean website as far as design goes, not as awe inspiring as I would expect from such a superstar with such a big budget. There are no external social media features to be found. No facebook? No twitter? There is at least a social network area where Kobe fans can interact.
- Clean Design
- WordPress Based
- Social Media Powered by BuddyPress with over 3,100 members
- No Twitter or Facebook
- Online Store
Allen Iverson (alleniverson.pro)
Allen Iverson’s official website is a fan website based around a social network. It’s a cool idea, he just provides a place for his fans to talk. The design is pretty clean, all around respectable website.
- Social Network with over 11,000 members
- Gear Store
Amare Stoudemire (amarestoudemire.com)
I have to say that of all the sites that I checked out, Amare Stoudemire had the best. It’s well designed, well coded, and has all the connections to all his content online.
- WordPress Based
- Up to date blog with good content
- Fully Connected to Facebook and Twitter
- Gear store
Chris Bosh (chris-bosh.com)
Chris Bosh totally missed the boat, his website doesn’t work at all. Hopefully it’s just down because it just crashed from a massive influx of traffic from free agency Twitter.
- Status: BROKEN
Dwayne Wade (dwyanewade.com)
Being from Miami, I have lots of love for Dwayne Wayde. His website just doesn’t reflect his caliber. He’s got the Twitter and the Facebook going on, but that’s pretty much it. There are 2 year gaps in his blog posts and generally the site seems abandoned short a blog post pulled from the Huffington Post. Not the worst on this list, but pretty close.
- No Branding – Is that a logo on the top left?
- Little Media or original content
- Twitter, Facebook, RSS, going on but thats about it
Lebron James (lebronjames.com)
As of now Lebron Jame’s website is just a landing page for you to sign up to his mailing list. There are a few sentences on the site that suggest a media hub and social network for Lebron James is on it’s way. The landing page is very cool and slightly interactive. There’s Ajax contact form, all the social media links, and a really interesting set of links hidden in his face on the left side. I’d be really interested to know how they coded that, if you look at the source it’s pretty complex.
- Just a landing page for now.
- Looks like his web and online marketing team is pointed in the right direction
Article By: Michael Chacon