Chapel Hill, N.C. -- After his first season as assistant coach at North Carolina State University, Jamill Kelly was named as Social Media Assistant Coach of the Year by Elite Level Sport Marketing (ELSM) and the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA).
"Jamill did an outstanding job this year using social media to market their program" said ELSM CEO Coyte Cooper. "He had great balance throughout the season and followed up on this with an outstanding campaign during the voting component of the competition."
Kelly outlasted seven other assistant coaches, all of who had used social media to both market their school's program and build their personal brand, in the first ever competition for Social Media of the Year, an extension of the Best of Brand Awards.
"Jamill's frequent updates have helped brand our program" said NCSU Head Coach Pat Popolizo. "He has sent a positive and consistent message about our program to alumni and fans of NC State and college wrestling. He has been instrumental in building our program."
Kelly earned the unique award after beating out his fellow assistant coaches in two key elements: a panel of judges assessing performance (60%) and an online voting competition (40%).
"This award shows the support I have from my friends in the wrestling community as well as the Wolfpack family" said Kelly. "Our staff tries hard to stay innovative and on top of the social media world. For us to continue to build our program and brand it is important to keep doing everything we can to reach as many people as we can."
NCSU wrestling was branded this past season through three social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
The NC State Wrestling Facebook page boasts 1,346 likes since its creation on November 29, 2010. The page serves as a one-stop-shop for all things Wolfpack wrestling including event links for NCSU wrestling competitions, post-work out polaroid pictures and alumni updates.
PackWrestling (@PackWrestle), the official Twitter account for the NC State program, has 1,399 followers and has tweeted over 3,400 times since the account was created less than two years ago. The account not only tweets out live, minute-by-minute match updates for NCSU and other wrestling competitions, but makes shout outs to other NCSU athletic teams and interacts with the Twitter community.
The final social media platform leveraged by NCSU wrestling is the ncstateathletics YouTube account which has more than 3,500 subscribers.
Unlike most programs, all three of the social media accounts can be accessed directly from the team's page on the official NCSU athletics website.
"We have worked together to build our brand and we have supported Jamill's efforts" said Popolizo. "We brainstormed as a staff to develop new marketing ideas but Jamill's creativity has really taken our program to another level."
Kelly joined the Wolfpack family after serving as the assistant coach at California-Polytechnic, where he helped four wrestlers reach the NCAA championships and two earn All-American honors during the 2011-12 season.
However Kelly's most noted accomplishment came in 2004 where he was a silver medalist at 145.5 pounds at the Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.
In addition to these accomplishments, while in college at Oklahoma University Kelly finished second at the Big 12 Conference Championships and was a two-year team captain.
For winning the award, Kelly will receive a custom framed awards poster and will be recognized at the NWCA Convention in August.
For more information on the "Social Media of the Year" awards, visit the ELSM site
About Elite Level Sports Marketing (ELSM)
Elite Level Sports Marketing is a firm which specializes in the development and implementation of innovative marketing plans for sport organizations, businesses, and programs. Functioning around five core values: innovation, integrity, connection, adding value, and making a difference, ELSM provides coaches and fans with marketing resources to help grow sport organizations.
About National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA)
The National Wrestling Coaches Association, established in 1928, is a non-profit organization for the advancement of all levels of the sport of wrestling with primary emphasis on developing coaches who work in academic environments. The membership embraces all people interested in amateur wrestling. The three core competencies of the NWCA are: coaching development, student-athlete welfare, and promotion of wrestling.