519 Sports Online - A Sit Down with Darren Stevenson
Written By: Brad Harkes
#LocalSports have been a major part of small communities for years and years. Darren Stevenson, ex-journalist turned entrepreneur realized the opportunity and impact-fulness that these local sports presented to the community. He also noticed that you could find snippets of local sports highlights and scores scattered about the world wide web with no one central home for all things #LocalSports.
Thus, 519 Sports Online was born.
519 Sports Online - The History & the Beginning
After working 12 years at a TV station as a sports journalist, Darren was suddenly laid off. After living, sleeping and breathing the same career at the same company for that length of time, to say the change was an adjustment would be an understatement. His status changed from employed to actively seeking work and spent the next few months applying for jobs in the media/ communications/ broadcasting field sending out 50+ resumes, with no luck.
This lack of leads with his new job search lead to the feeling that maybe Darren Stevenson has been pigeonholed as the “guy with the camera doing the interviews” and the next move would be to apply himself in a totally new direction and change up his whole career field.
Queue one of the coaches from a local youth hockey team approached Darren saying “I’d love to have you involved doing some content for the hockey team this year”. Darren who had already adapted the move along and try something new mindset replied “I think I’m ready to move on from that part of my life, I’ve done the local media/ sports thing. But I want to explore other career options and opportunities.”
The coach respected his decision and left Darren with “I totally understand where you’re coming from Darren, just come up to practice once or twice.”
The coach knew. He knew right away where that would end up going.
Darren went to the practices, did some interviews with the kids and realized local sports and local media has been the source of his heart beating forever and turning away from it would be ignoring and shelving what his true passion is. The kid's reactions and the happiness it brought them from being interviewed, just like their favourite superstars on TV was the reminder Darren need that this job is the only one he could see himself doing. Darren Stevenson was going to make his living doing what he loves and not settle for anything less.
519 Sports Online - Not Your Typical Sports Coverage
Darren fills his feeds, with game scores, highlights, trade updates and everything that you’d expect from a typical sports channel, but what sets 519 Sports Online apart from the rest of the pack is his positivity focused content.
Some interviewers will bombard the losing team's goalie after a game asking for their take, trying to decipher what was going through their head on the game-winning goal against. Darren, however, prefers to take the opposite route and focus on the winners, get the positive outlooks and celebrate the success of the winning team. All this while still shouting out the losing team and respecting their effort and perseverance. With all the negativity out there it’s a breath of fresh air to know you’ll be seeing “pump-you-up” content that excites and motivates the viewers.
This business is Darren’s ‘baby’ and he has full creative control over his content. He has a philosophy where it is his responsibility to provide the community with content that is positive, appropriate and reasonable and lets it be known that if any coach, gm, player or fan have any issues with content on his pages that they reach out in any way and he will be sure to assess your request. This is one of many reasons we respect Darren’s work and why we decided to collaborate with him.
Social Media and its Impact on 519 Sports Online
“Everybody consumes their news and information on a different platform” and this is why Darren ensures his content pops up on multiple social media mediums and has built a following of over 35,000 people across them all. 519 Sports Online can be found on Instagram, Youtube, Twitter, Facebook and at www.519sportsonline.ca to ensure you can get your local sports fix on your platform of choice.
From starting to record sports highlights on his iPhone, social media has been the first choice for Darren to post, showcase and grow his channels to provide the local communities with full coverage of their local sports that their friends, children, and neighbours take part in.
Darren will be constantly providing content to the local communities and we have full belief that success will continue to follow as he focuses on providing the best #LocalSports content to our surrounding communities.
Have a listen to the insightful podcast we made with Darren here (link) we cover the things mentioned in this blog as well as so much more, such as school, motivation and career paths. You can really hear it in Darren’s voice, that he stands by everything he said in the podcast and does everything to the absolute best of his ability.
Enjoy the podcast here and stay tuned for the next time we’ll have Darren on the show!
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