Social media has become a pillar of our society. We use Instagram to connect to people with pictures and hashtags, Twitter for live updates and commentary, and Facebook for personalized communities and groups. There is a social platform to fit every person and their individual needs.
Another foundational social obsession within the global community is the fascination of sports. Recently, sports teams decided to integrate social media into their marketing and outreach strategy and it has proven to be tremendously successful. Dedicated fans from all around the world gain access to live action communities online, where they can be a part of the excitement and the game day rush.
How is Social Media Affecting Sports Culture?
The integration of sports and social media has opened up a new door, not only for the sports teams themselves, but for individual players and their sponsors. Bettingsites.me.uk recently made an infographic to display “The Growing Impact of Social Media on Sports.”
Here are a few interesting facts that highlight the booming trend:
- 56.8% sports fans think that social media has an impact on sports.
- 93.3% of global sports leaders believe that the sports presence and engagement will continue to grow on social media in the next 5-10 years.
- ESPN lost 52 million in revenue for the year 2016 in part due to fans receiving their sports data from social media.
- SkySports was down in viewers by 19% for the year 2016.
ROI for Sponsors and Athletes
Cristiano Ronaldo is one soccer player in particular who has seen tremendous growth for himself and the brands he represents through his social media presence. Ronaldo is the only male athlete to top 100M followers on Instagram with his current following at 112.4M, and he has 60.5M fans following him on Twitter. Ronaldo has raked in the cash from his sponsor Nike by advertising their brand and promoting them on his social media feeds. Many other athletes are using social media in the same way and sponsors are seeing the ROI immediately.
With live streaming video now available on Facebook, the feature has opened up a new way to share sports and other exciting life events within communities. Although Facebook is new to video, YouTube has been pioneering video content for over a decade and enables live streaming and uploads. Having accessible video to viewers allows for more shares, likes, and overall interactions with your fan base online. The sports industry is seeing an increase in highlight videos being shared along with pre-game footage and interviews. High quality video content is the first step in the migration of sports, from the television to a multi platform mobile entertainment experience.