Over the years, Reeta Hubbard has gone from a popular sports media figure in her home of Baltimore to a popular sports media figure nationwide.
That’s easy…through Twitter.
Hubbard, aka @theNFLchick on Twitter, has gained a large following on Twitter since she joined in 2009. She has more than 9,700 followers who enjoy her witty and entertaining tweets on sports and current events.
Reeta took the time to answer questions for Fans Favorite Fan about her rise to social media fame.
1) How did your love of sports developed?
My grandfather played sports in college before going into the military, and my dad was a football player in college and even on an NFL roster. So really it’s just something I was born into. I’ve been a baseball fan all my life. Football didn’t come into my life until my teenage years, but it’s easily surpassed my love for baseball.
2) You are a popular follow in sports Twitter. How did you build your following?
I just started tweeting to people with common interest. No lie, that’s how I started. And I had no idea those same people would end up being bloggers, up and coming media personalities and sports writers. When Twitter was new, we all just tweeted about sports together and as their popularity grew, so did my follower count. Communicating with people is key.
3) Not only are you popular on Twitter, from what I’ve gathered you are also a popular sports news figure in Baltimore. Where did your journey begin in sports media and how did it develop?
I owe everything I’ve done in the Baltimore area to Rob Long (morning personality, 105.7 The Fan, Baltimore). Years ago he asked me to come on his show. We created a friendship, which ultimately gained me a fill in spot on his Saturday morning football show, which opened up people’s eyes to me locally. He’s been a godsend to what I’ve been able to do in the area.
The highs are the experiences. I’ve worked with Nike, New Era, the NFL directly and so many other large corporations. For them to acknowledge me is HUGE. The down side is, I feel me actually getting into the media business full time seems like a far stretch. I’m 37 and I’m in a mid market town, so the opportunities just aren’t there as they may be for someone younger.
5) What is your favorite sports moment?
Seeing the Ravens win Super Bowl 47. I was at the game. That entire experience was one of the best in my life. I LOVE New Orleans and I love the Ravens even more. I was able to be credentialed to all the events leading up to the SB as media (was there at the Beyoncé press conference), and then was able to attend the game as a fan. Best sports experience of my life.
Honestly, many of my favorite people are the non-famous ones. Because to me that’s what makes Twitter great. Not the celebs, but the folks working regular jobs, sounding off about sports. Guys like @DragonflyJonez, @LajethroJenkins always make me laugh. They make Twitter great.
7) Has social media changed the way you watch sporting events?
Yes. It gives you insight on what other fans are thinking. Most folks sound off in emotion when their team is playing. But you can see how much they exaggerate how bad a loss is or how much they downplay a win. Sometimes Twitter sports can be annoying but for the most part it’s funny as hell.
8) Although a lot of good things come out of social media, of course you know there are some bad that comes with it, such as trolls—specifically men who disrespect women in sports. How are you able to ignore the trolls?
The block feature is awesome; LOL! But honestly, over the years, the disrespect has dwindled and died down. I think when men see all you’re doing in the sports world, men see that your hot takes are obviously taken more seriously than theirs. And you have to respect that. I remember a few years ago, I said the Ravens should trade then LT Jared Gaither in order to gain draft picks while he’s still good in trade value. Everyone called the show and said I was crazy and needed to stick to my day job. A year later he was released and we received nothing for him. Guess who was quiet when I brought that back up?? That’s probably the last time I’ve been “disrespected.”
9) How will continue to use social media to further your brand?
Every time a new hot SM comes out, just hop on it and use it. Social media is ongoing and always changing. You have to keep up with the changes, in order to communicate with the people. But Twitter will always be my home. It the easiest, the hashtags are a godsend and it’s real time. My favorite of them all. I’ll continue to tweet and interact with people, because you never know what field that person is in and if they can help you add to your brand.