Guest Post: This is part 1 of 2 in a deeper look into the digital objectives and successes of Team GB during London 2012. In this article Joe Morgan, Online Editor and Digital Manager at Team GB, gives us his unique summary of how it went.
As London 2012 comes to a close we can now reflect on what has truly been the first Social Media games.
The huge growth in mobile & social brings no surprise that this was the first Olympic Games to be told in 140 characters, although TV viewers worldwide only grew from 4.7 billion in 2008 to an estimated 4.9 billion in 2012, Facebook has grown from 100 to 900 million active users, Twitter from 100 million tweets per yearly quarter to 340 million tweets per day & Smartphones up 456% from 18.9 million to 106.7 million (Sources = Neilsen, eMarketer, Forrester)
We took a fresh approach to how we communicate online with our audience, social media had brought to the table this notion of inclusiveness, collaboration, its not about you & them, its about us, sharing conversations and content with the social community.
Our aim for London 2012 was to engage the nation, to keep our fans informed around the clock, to report on the highs, the lows, the medals, the close shaves and everything in between
When it came to the social strategy I wanted to keep it simple; rich content, in real time, around the clock, that aimed to inform, inspire, engage and educate our audiences.
We employed a team of 4 volunteers named the “Social Media Sports Commentators” who were trained up & briefed with our ambition & strategy, who then worked 8 hour daily shifts to divide and conquer all of the events GB were competing in.
We kept our fans engaged and informed through the 17 days, from posting photos of medal winning moments, to behind the scenes videos from Team GB house to letting our fans choose our daily cover photo on Facebook. We weren’t afraid to ask our fans for things in return either, for example when Gemma broke her thumb in her silver medal winning match, we posted a photo with her & her cast, asking fans to show THEIR thumbs to wish Gemma speedy recovery.
As a way for fans to feel included, we created a real time fan gallery that showed the fan story of the Olympics through the power of photos. We wanted to create a pin board of stories from our fans, wherever they were in the world, who ever they were cheering from in GB, we wanted to see their story and invited them to do through photos. http://photos.teamgb.com
Lastly, we launched Team GB LIVE put London 2012 into the hands of our fans, providing them with a truly customized Olympic experience. It allowed fans to stay completely up to date with all the latest news and plan their Olympics with the full, interactive Team GB event schedule. Fans could customise their desktop or mobile app by choosing only the athletes, sports and venues they wanted to follow and get every London 2012 result LIVE as Our Greatest Team took on the rest of the world.
With the evolution of sport viewing habits, Team GB LIVE was a revolutionary platform where you could build your own personal Olympic experience and follow just the things you like.
So what is next for Our Greatest Team and Team GB in terms of social and digital media? We will of course see a sharp decline in engagement levels, that is to be expected, but our job is far from over.
For past few weeks we have been talking about our athletes and the Team & how they have inspired the nation and made us all proud, which leads into legacy. Legacy is emotive, it’s the heroes, the inspiration the memories and with that we will invite the nation to share their legacy, tell us their stories and memories and what has inspired them.
What we have built over the course of the campaign is an online fan base for Team GB, we have built up the awareness of our sports and athletes and we now have over 1.6 million people we can talk to on a daily basis, with each and every one of them wanting to talk back.
Facts & Stats
Digital & social
- During the 17 days of London 2012, 306 billion pieces of content where shared across the Open Web. That is 208,233 shares per second. Source = RediumOne
- Over 620% increase of Team GB social media fans/followers during the Olympics Games
- Over 2000% increase of Team GB social media fans/followers since the start of the Our Greatest Team campaign in March
- Over 35 million people engaged with #TeamGB or #OurGreatestTeam
- Closing Ceremony tweet received over 65,000 Re-Tweets & Opening Ceremony Tweet received 45,000 Re-tweets
- #OurgreatestTeam averaged at 542,000 views per day with peaks on August 4th/12th at over 750,000.
- #TeamGB averaged at 1.8 million views per day with peaks again on August 4th/12th at over 2.8 million.