Ulster Council Advice

ULSTER GAA: Social media and GAA clubs

IN the past, the primary way for GAA clubs to communicate with their members was through club notes published in the local paper or parish bulletin every week. Results of games were often communicated through word of mouth.

However, the internet – and more recently social media – has hugely changed how people communicate and receive information.

While there is still an important role for the club notes in ‘traditional’ forms of media such as newspapers, people are now used to consuming their news differently. So, what do GAA clubs need to know, what are the pitfalls, and how can they use social media more effectively?

Perhaps the best place to start for any club or club PRO is with the GAA’s Official ‘Social Media Policy and Guidelines’, a resource available on the GAA website. The policy applies to all clubs, county boards and provinces, to all officials and to all members.

It fundamentally outlines the practical steps for setting up social media accounts and gives a breakdown of the uses for each platform.

The vast majority of GAA clubs now have a social media presence, with Facebook and X (formerly Twitter) by far the most popular platforms. Instagram is also growing hugely popular, with more and more clubs opting to share their ‘story’ via the picture sharing platform.

Social media offers clubs a chance to tell their story. Posts shared should be relevant to members and the club; it should be updated on a regular basis and most importantly, should be based on the values of the club.

Facebook is the largest and most popular social media platform with just over three billion active monthly users. It allows you to post more detailed and informative posts to members, and share pictures, videos and links to websites.

X is particularly useful for more frequent updates, particularly around match days and live events, with updates very useful for keeping a club’s following up to date with scores from a game in real-time. Like Facebook, you can also share pictures, short videos and website links.

Instagram allows for non-time sensitive posts and stories to be shared. It’s best utilised as a picture and video sharing platform. The demographic using Instagram tends to be much younger and it has a higher proportion of females using it, and can allow a club to engage with a wider part of their membership who may not use Facebook or Twitter.

Social Media Tips:

– Make sure your profile is branded and instantly identifiable as your club

The most potent and recognisable symbol from any club is the club crest. It will be on club jerseys, merchandise and signage. Ensure consistent branding by setting a high-quality image of your club crest as your profile picture and your account name as the club name.

– Familiarise yourself with the GAA Social Media Policy

It is important that those controlling any club’s social media accounts realise that they are subject to this policy.

It is noted in the policy: “The inappropriate use of social media by either an official or a member will be treated with the utmost gravity by the GAA and may result in disciplinary action.”

Club officials may feel that a referee has had a poor game, but it’s best not to let the world know through the official club account! Be sensible and responsible when posting online from your club’s social media account, as it is the official platform and a representation of your club to the wider world.

– Limit who has access to the account

By controlling who has access to the account it allows for posts to be co-ordinated, you can ensure that there is a consistent voice from the account and helps limit those with access going on a ‘solo run’.

– Make use of images and videos

Images and videos have more shares and engagement than any other form of post on Facebook and X. Instagram has the most engagements of any other social media channel. This is a testament to the power of visuals in engaging an audience and telling a story. When taking pictures and videos, make sure it is well lit (sun or light on your shoulder) and that the picture is framed (there are no distractions in the background).

To view the GAA’s Social Media Policy, visit

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