It’s all over. The most connected World Cup. The most digital World Cup. The most social World Cup…ever.
New sporting records were set for tweets sent, Facebook interactions and inappropriate photos involving Mario Balotelli and the Queen.
But with everyone from sponsors to sports stars, brands to broadcasters clambering over themselves to tap into the Brazilian buzz, what made you smile or share?
Andy McKenzie of digital sports content specialists LiveWire Sport picked out some memorable moments from the last month.
— Twitter Data (@TwitterData) July 14, 2014
The weeks and months leading up to major events are always hugely important for brands to maximise their time with big names before disappearing behind FIFA’s commercial curtain.
Digital campaigns leading up to the World Cup Finals generally centred around gaining maximum exposure for high-end advertising campaigns featuring star players.
Nice storytelling, a hint of humour and Rooney’s dodgy Scouse accent helped earn their 64m YouTube views for The Last Game, without any of their stars presumably even having to appear in front of a green screen or step into a recording booth.
Good job they got in early as the only player in the campaign that made it as far as the semi-finals was David Luiz, who perhaps took Nike’s ‘Risk Everything’ message too seriously.
Hats off to the Daily Telegraph’s Project Babb for a brilliantly stitched together Roy Hodgson rap. Altogether now – “You’ve got to hold and give…”
Time to unveil the shiny new technological toys.
The official FIFA.com site had a new live centre and a social hub that was packed full of detail and data, with sponsors like McDonald’s, Hyundai, Castrol and Budweiser handed some prime real estate, while Sony had a destination of their own at One Stadium Live.
Facebook created a World Cup hub to access content, while Twitter rolled out a number of innovations including hashflags, man-of-the-match voting (sponsored by Budweiser), score updates and dedicated match pages for each game.
ITV used Grabyo and partnered with Paddy Power and Twitter Amplify to maximise their live rights, while everyone enjoyed some friendly fun at the expense of Robbie Savage
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) June 16, 2014
Every detail of the tournament was analysed – even down to who won the World Cup of arm-folding (some welcome news for Tottenham fans).
The rapid rise of real-time content continues.
Who can react quickest to those huge talking points, with brands all trying to create that ‘Oreo moment’.
Adidas set up a newsroom in Rio to react to events by creating content and it seems the #allin motto applies to the resources they put behind it.
— Listerine Global (@ListerineGlobal) July 13, 2014
Brazil’s monumental fall from grace was perfect Paddy Power territory
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) July 9, 2014
while PornHub gained an unexpected uplift in extra followers on the back of their tweet.
Please stop uploading the game highlights to Pornhub… Our public humiliation category is full. #BrazilvsGermany
— Pornhub Katie (@Pornhub) July 8, 2014
Brilliant Ads shared a quite brilliant take on the 2014 logo that got nearly 13k retweets
— Brilliant Ads (@Brilliant_Ads) July 8, 2014
while @brazuca was silenced for one night.
— Getty Images Sport (@GettySport) July 8, 2014
Hats off to the Scottish FA for reacting to Germany’s crushing of Brazil with a timely and humorous post about their upcoming Euro 2016 qualifier (v Germany).
Things turned out nice in the end for adidas in their battle with Nike as Messi and Muller, Argentina and Germany all manufactured their way to the final, seeing off the Nike-sponsored pair of Brazil and the Netherlands in the semi-finals.
Adidas had David Beckham on their YouTube show The Dugout, the official ball, the winners of the Golden Glove, the Golden Ball and the Golden Boot.
Nike still had the match-winning Mario Gotze
— Nike Football (@nikefootball) July 13, 2014
but maybe nobody reacted better than Lufthansa to Germany’s win.
As another major sporting event passes through our timelines, what has stood out for you? Did we miss any outstanding World Cup content? Is anyone out there really interested in animals predicting scores?
Guest Post: Tom Kelk is a tech/sport blogger and Senior Social Exec at communications agency, Pitch. You can find him on Twitter (@TomKelk)
This is the first World Cup where brands have heavily activated around the tournament through digital channels – when they have no sponsored right to do so. Since South Africa 2010, Facebook has more than doubled its monthly active users, Twitter users now send more than 10x as many tweets per day and now Instagram exists!
The social media landscape has been transformed in four years, and gives an indication to why brands are putting the effort into activating around Brazil 2014. Surely all this chatter around an event is a dream come true for the official sponsors? It’s not quite that simple.
In a recent study by Unruly Media, only four of the top 11 most viewed brand ads about the World Cup were from sponsors. Less than half. Continental Tyres – one of the leading official sponsors, didn’t feature at all. Sony – an official partner, are nowhere to be seen.
Unsurprisingly, Nike use their assets and force the relation in the minds of consumers. All the Nike-sponsored teams and players were involved in their heavy-cost ad that implies they are official sponsors – but they’re not. If you did a poll, how many would say Nike were a main World Cup sponsor?
Beats have come out trumps from this World Cup through an impressive ad utilising their playing assets. Again, no ‘right’ to have a World Cup conversation but used World Cup players to enable the link with the consumer.
Obviously the study isn’t flawless, but it does continue to highlight an interesting question. In the digital age, is there still the same value in being an official sponsor?
To answer the question, it’s worth dissecting a sponsorship package to understand where the value still lies, and where better to look, than FIFA.
FIFA state that a sponsor benefits from: “Wide product category exclusivity which is afforded to all Commercial Affiliates, allowing each brand to distinguish themselves from competing brands in their product category.” Now, whilst this has been aggressively reinforced in and around the stadiums, this is far from true in a digital space. To start with, look at the table above. Nike above adidas, Samsung above Sony and Nissan above Hyundai. Not looking that distinguished from competitors there… What about beer brands? Budweiser, official sponsor, have activated heavily around the World Cup:
— Budweiser UK (@BudweiserUK) June 28, 2014
But has that stopped Newcastle Brown Ale benefitting from the platform? Not one bit.
Fair-weather fandom never tasted so good. pic.twitter.com/1TBt8XGPLD
— Newcastle Brown Ale (@Newcastle) June 16, 2014
Another key benefit outlined by FIFA, is “offering a unique platform vis-à-vis their competitors.” This point is the crux of the debate. I would argue that this platform has disintegrated in recent years. Social media has enabled brands without the official connection to ambush these ‘unique platforms’.You only have to consider the Suarez incident.
— SNICKERS® (@SNICKERS) June 24, 2014
— Listerine Global (@ListerineGlobal) June 24, 2014
There was a clamour for attention from brands off the back of the biting incident, but how many were official? The only one that springs to mind, was the Uruguayan Mcdonald’s Twitter account, which was more than likely not signed off in the higher echelons of Mcdonald’s as FIFA would absolutely frown upon sponsors discussing the incident!
Aside from the conversation, what else do FIFA sponsors have the ‘right’ to use? They can use official tournament title and logos – but is it beneficial, or is that in fact a hindrance? When using social media, audiences have developed an eye for official titling, and have almost developed an instinctive filter to those posts. Besides, as seen with the Snickers tweet above, who needs to reference the World Cup when over 5,000 tweets per second are being sent? Everyone knows what you’re talking about. In fact, could we go further and ask whether it could be better to work unofficially?
So, taking all this into account, does the traditional sponsorship model need altering to include further digital rights and should sponsors be negotiating harder to get this cover? Surely when their competitors begin to be more prominent in discussions over the World Cup, for example, surely they have a right to question costs?
Perhaps the new ideal ‘bigger brand’ model will follow the likes of Nike and Beats who find themselves less restricted by buying direct player assets and activate on an unofficial basis.Bigger brands will increasingly explore these opportunities in a creative capacity to give them the right to participate more heavily in these conversations. As for the smaller brands, they’ll continue to jump in and out when there’s a product link, and get small wins when they can.
There’s obviously still value in sponsorship. Access to assets like players and visible advertising rights are ultimately beneficial. However, social media allows a conversation to be had by brands when they couldn’t do so before without treading on toes and this is where sponsors need to be tougher on their sponsorships to maximise the value they receive on a digital platform, as well as a physical.
This is a topic that a dissertation could focus upon, and I’ve just brushed the surface here, but what do you think? Is the value of a sponsorship still the same and how has it been affected by the rise of social media? What should brands do to fight competitors on both platforms?
ITV will be sharing near-live highlights of the FIFA World Cup to ITV.com and social platforms following a deal with Grabyo, the real-time video company. ITV will be using the Grabyo platform to share match highlights and post-match commentary clips from its live TV coverage across ITV.com, Facebook and Twitter within seconds.
There has been a rapid acceleration of social media usage as well as mainstream adoption of smartphones and tablets since the last FIFA World Cup. There are now 30 million mobile social media users in the UK while smartphone penetration is expected to reach 75 per cent of the UK population this year. Furthermore, UK consumers now spend an average of 96 minutes a day on social media.
ITV recently launched its new mobile first web experience, ITV.com. The site adopts a clean and simple design offering users a rolling timeline of news around its portfolio of programmes, allowing for content to be shared seamlessly on social media platforms.
Using this new design and working with Grabyo, the broadcaster aims to deliver an exceptional multiscreen World Cup experience to viewers this summer. Live coverage will be complemented with real-time video highlights, which can be discovered on Twitter and Facebook and viewed immediately in a real-time video gallery on ITV.com. The video highlights will cover key moments from 34 matches as well as post-match commentary, culminating with the World Cup final. Brands will have the opportunity to sponsor the clips and extend distribution through promotional and campaign tools.
Ollie Irish, Executive Producer for ITV Sport, said:
“We are very excited to be working with Grabyo to deliver real-time video highlights of ITV games across social media channels and itv.com. The partnership will allow us to enhance the viewer experience and drive conversation around this major TV event as well as offer compelling opportunities for our clients to connect with consumers as all the action unfolds.”
“We’ve been working with sports formats for the last six months but we always knew that the World Cup would be the ultimate real-time format,” comments Grabyo CEO Gareth Capon. “As a real-time, bite-size format that is optimised for viewing on mobile devices, short-form live video is highly appealing to social media users. We see huge and immediate spikes in traffic as premium sports content is shared on social media – and not just the obvious clips such as goals but from all kinds of irreverent clips too. We’re expecting World Cup clips to drive very significant organic reach on their own but it will be fascinating to see how this is extended using promotional tools such as Twitter Amplify.”
Grabyo recently revealed that 72% of its video traffic is mobile, illustrating how effective real-time social video is at reaching mobile social media users, and its platform regularly scales to hundreds of thousands of users within seconds as clips are shared.
 GlobalWebIndex Report - http://wearesocial.net/blog/
 GlobalWebIndex Report - http://wearesocial.net/blog/
Millions of fans around the world will watch the World Cup kick off on Thursday but just how far would your national team get if the outcome of the tournament was actually determined by how many followers each country has on LFC’s official Facebook page?
The Reds have used the little downtime they may have – this time of year is often the busiest for the non playing staff – to take a look at how the World Cup would play out just going on the representation of countries on their Facebook page.
It’s a fact that LFC boast more international Facebook pages and a higher engagement rate per follower than any other club in Europe with Thailand this year replacing Indonesia as Liverpool’s biggest country on the social media platform.
It’s a bit of fun as we prepare for tomorrow’s big kick off in Brazil. With so much hype leading up to it and a lack of football to take our minds of it since the end of the Premier League season we need a bit of light relief now and again.
It is interesting to look at the biggest groups on Liverpool’s Facebook page with England (obviously), Mexico, USA and Algeria being the top ones represented. This doesn’t take into account those whose nations aren’t in the World Cup, with Asia representing such a significant total.
It does give you a feel for the very diverse nature of the clubs fan base, and the great work that Paul Rogers and his team have been doing within the international markets. Wouldn’t we love it though if England really did win!
With only 2 days until the opening ceremony in Rio of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, we thought we’d take a look at who is being talked about on Twitter. This last month has seen all the main sponsors (and the traditional ambush brands) pushing their multi-million pound ad campaigns.
All those brands will be looking at how many times they’ve getting mentioned on Twitter – as well as a deep dive into who it is who is doing the talking (influencers), what they’re talking about (good or bad) and if it’s actually affected their bottom line.
There are some easy direct comparisons to make as there tends to be a big sponsor and then an equally large brand who are looking for a piece of the World Cup action. Below we’ve taken a look at adidas v Nike, Coca Cola v Pepsi and Hyundai v Vauxhall.
adidas v Nike
This is the one which has already filled out many column inches in both the trade press and traditional business ones too. The last World Cup was dominated by Nike with their “Write The Future” campaign headed by Cristiano Ronaldo. This time adidas haven’t been as complacent with a number of new digital initiatives, whilst Nike have once again gone for the BIG player dominated ad (and cartoon).
It may come as a bit of a surprise to see that @adidasfootball has so far dominated the conversation over the last month. The main spike from @nikefootball coming in the last few days with the release of the final part of their film trilogy “The Last Game“. adidas saw their peak come with the launch of “The Dream” ad featuring their star man, Leo Messi.
What we are missing is the peaks in April when the big ads started to hit our screens. It’s going to be close this year for sure in the battle of the two dominant sports brands during the Finals itself. And then we’ll find out the financial results later on in the year when we hear who made their sales targets.
Coca Cola v Pepsi
This is as keenly fought as the battle of the sports brands. Coca Cola are a long-time supporter of FIFA and have recently renewed their sponsorship up until 2022. Pepsi have taken the Nike approach to major events and spent their money on marketing campaigns and players rather than event sponsorships.
This is more clear cut with Coca Cola enjoying much of the conversation. What it doesn’t show though is a break down of those mentions that include the World Cup or football. Some of the peaks are around non-sports events and gives an indication more of their overall performance as a brand.
Hyundai v Vauxhall
This is a slightly left field one but worth looking at after the recent involvement of both brands at last month’s Digital Sport London event. Hyundai (in co-sponsorship with Kia) are a FIFA partner whilst Vauxhall are involved in the event through their sponsorship of the England team.
Hyundai have been running competitions to brand the team buses (which didn’t go entirely to plan) and in the UK have partnered with Copa90 to provide a different platform to talk about the event. Vauxhall meanwhile have loaded their campaign up front with Facebook Q&A’s and behind-the-scenes content from friendlies and training days as the players started to prepare for their trip to Brazil.
It’s clear though that Hyundai have a long way to when it comes to maximising their presence on social media for their football sponsorship. They have no dedicated football account, which they do on Facebook but has not been updated since Euro 2012. Vauxhall meanwhile have @vauxhallengland which has been highly active and looking to engage with football fans.
One that people didn’t expect to come to the fore as it did was Beats By Dre. They launched their fantastic “Game Before The Game” video with Neymar, Fabregas, Sturridge and many more World Cup stars featuring in it. It certainly made an impact but has seen mentions taper off in recent days and the hashtag #GameBeforeTheGame has not really caught on with the public.
With the event almost upon us after month’s, if not years, of anticipation you can see that people are talking about it much more now that it is within site. Teams have finished their preparations, their have been the anticipated protests and upscaling of the articles about Qatar in 2022. This has all led to a significant increase in mentions of #WorldCup, #WorldCup2014 and #FIFA (far more mentions of FIFA by hashtag than account is maybe something they should look at).
Enjoy the World Cup everyone. We’ll be keeping an eye on Twitter (and other platforms) activity over the next month and report back all the interesting findings it throws up.
The picture is becoming clearer from one of the biggest sponsors of FIFA, who recently extended their deal until 2030, after the release of their recent TV ad… and now news of a brand new YouTube series. It presents a major shift for the sports brand as they go directly after World Cup broadcasters, stating that “the traditional press conference is no more..”!
The global sports manufactorer is going to be broadcasting live from Rio a series of exclusive programmes on the platform starting from the first day of the World Cup, June 12th. It’s a very similar move to that of Hyundai UK who teamed up with YouTube backed football channel Copa90 earlier in the year, though with a different emphasis. adidas have got together with Kick TV, the US equivalents of Copa90, which is part of MLS Digital for this one.
It will be hosted by Jimmy Conrad, Layla Anne-Lee and Hugh Wizzy and give fans the opportunity to take part in a virtual press conference incorporating live interviews with the likes of Cafu, Kaka and Lucas Moura, adidas product reviews, behind-the-scenes action with adidas sponsored teams and chances to win prizes.
It’s another part of the adidas sponsorship plan that has been over 2 years in the making. London-based social media agency We Are Social will have been closely involved in the strategy and will I’m sure be on-site working long shifts to make this the best campaign ever.
Senior PR Manager (adidas Football), Rob Hughes, someone I knew well from my time at WAS (disclosure: I used to work on the adidas account at WAS), has said;
“The Dugout is a very exciting concept for Adidas, bringing together the best of Adidas talent with the reach of YouTube. The broadcasts will allow all football fans around the world to participate in the global conversation surrounding the Fifa World Cup. This youth-magazine-style football show will be fans’ inside view into the tournament, showcasing Brazil at its best with many famous faces and will be a must-watch throughout the competition,”
The first show is being aired at 2.00pm BST (10.00am BRT) and there will be 6 in total as part of the #AllInOrNothing campaign that has been intriguing commentators around the world since its launch. The final show will be on the eve of the World Cup Final. You’ll be able to watch it on the adidas Football YouTube page at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuAPWG5e8lQ&feature=share
“The streaming of live adidas shows from Brazil is a unique brand proposition and a great example of a strategic partnership creating new, engaging and innovative content to a relevant audience. Our partnership with adidas has already seen us work together on many elements of their World Cup campaign, and these broadcasts will position adidas and YouTube at the heart of the conversation around this summer’s tournament. We are delighted that the World Cup’s number one partner, adidas, has chosen YouTube to play such a central role in their World Cup campaign.” – Lucas Watson, VP, Global Brand Solutions at YouTube.
It’s another different approach we’ve seen in recent weeks, but not so different from what Hyundai have put together. It is is though an example of a brand directly taking on traditional broadcasters as they make use of their access to players, coaches and other World Cup content. They’re also working with an already established YouTube channel in Kick TV and thus will be tapping into their audience. The start of a new trend?
Add to that the expected big spend using YouTube TrueView and they’re be looking to get the attention of every football fan out there. I also expect to see and really tight and well executed social media plan that will bring others into the conversation.
Will you be tuning in?
It’s now less than a week until the 2014 World Cup starts in Brazil, as long as the stadiums are ready of course. The excitement you can feel has been building with the pre-WC friendly matches well underway and Panini stickers being swapped at a furious rate.
Last week I took a look at what a few of the brands had been doing in the build up to the world’s second biggest tournament (only the Olympics outdoes it in terms of audience). So this time I’m going to look at what FIFA itself has been doing when it comes to digital.
The primary destinations for fans will be FIFA.com, m.fifa.com (the newly revamped app which has encountered some issues), Facebook and Twitter. No big surprises with the social channels chosen, so no place for the likes of Google+, YouTube or WhatsApp at the moment – concentrating on doing a few well is always better than doing too much just for the sake of it.
The video content is being housed on FIFA.com as they look to keep their quality content on an area they have most control and also links to their sponsors and other digital platforms. This is also true with the Live Blog from Brazil, with a key element being the embedding of tweets and Facebook posts from fans, stakeholders, media and key influencers. Live blogging is something we’ve seen grow massively with the European Tour, Man City, Premier League and many others taking advantage of it.
The big new activation for FIFA is ‘Global Stadium’, a concept we covered here only a few days ago when it was launched. Their aim is to unite fans from around the world and capture the excitement and spirit of the World Cup. Fans can #JoinIn and are able to;
- Follow the match through the Live Blog and stats
- See social posts from players, coaches and celebrities and interact with their own friend’s posts
- Discuss the game as it happens with a worldwide audience
- Get involved in a variety of exclusive activities such as winning the actual kick-off ball from that game and voting for their Man of the Match
On Facebook and Twitter they have stated that their core content aims fall under 5 sub-headings; Football, Fans, Facilitation, Fun and FIFA. In simple terms, covering everything on the pitch; engaging fans in fun, interactive contests and asking them to share THEIR content; showcasing some of FIFA’s core programmes and initiatives; and facilitating the journey of fans and media, by providing regular, up-to-date, relevant information.
FIFA’s first Facebook page was launched in June 2013 to coincide with the FIFA Confederations Cup. Twelve pages are now live, with the FIFA World Cup page now having over 19 million fans worldwide. The content is image driven. Photos, videos, trivia questions, exclusive interviews, fan promotions in the FIFA online store, news on the launch of ticket sales phases, and the promotion of fun fan games, such as
the Online Panini album aim to provide a variety of content.
FIFA’s extensive archive also enables us to take a look back at the stars of the past. Working together with FIFA’s Partners, they are also able to tell the story of unique opportunities provided at every FIFA competition, for example, through the FIFA Youth Programme, for children to get a birds-eye view, by being a player escort or being part of the ball crew.
In April 2014, eight out of the ten fastest-growing sports pages on Facebook belonged to FIFA, and at the beginning of May 2014, FIFA merged its two World Cup Facebook pages – one historic; one focused on Brazil 2014, to create one central World Cup hub.
FIFA’s presence on Twitter went live in mid-2010. There are accounts for FIFA (@fifacom) and @FIFAWorldCup in six languages, for the FIFA President and the FIFA Secretary General, as well as accounts for the FIFA Media Department (@FIFAMedia) and women’s football (@FIFAWWC).
The platform provides a personal and direct communication channel with fans, media, stakeholders and key influencers. Hashtags are used for FIFA’s tournaments to create discussion topics, regular interactive daily polls/Q&As are posted
to ask fans for their views on the ‘key topics of the day’ and wherever possible, breaking news is posted to ensure FIFA’s authentic message is relayed in real-time.
Overall, there are more than seven million followers across FIFA’s accounts. The platform was used for the official man of the match vote during FIFA Confederations Cup 2013 and will once again be utilised for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™, in an innovative activation together with Anheuser-Busch & Twitter. Fans will also be able to cast their Man of the Match vote on Twitter, across FIFA’s six @fifacom and six
@fifaworldcup language accounts, while votes will also be counted from FIFA.com too.
FIFA Digital will be using the following hashtags in six languages: #WorldCup, #Joinin, #GlobalStadium while each match will have its own hashtag too.
In order to measure effectiveness and better tailor content to our fans, FIFA utilises a variety of reporting/monitoring tools for real-time analytics. We will also be working together with social media platforms to provide key data, both as part of our daily content, but also to Media through the daily news briefings at the 2014 FIFA World Cup. FIFA Digital will also produce a series of Infographics at key stages of the competition, to provide key digital highlights.
Marmalade on Toast is a small, creative digital agency, based in Winchester. They’re passionate about all things creative and love sport. In 2012 they decided to run our own studio sweepstake for the European Championships, so created their very own web version, rather than cutting out bits of paper! The result was a simple, but effective website: http://euro2012.marmaladeontoast.co.uk/
It was released to the public, and was picked up by a number of users. When the World Cup came up this year, they realised they needed to update the website, and decided to create something truly unique. Hence Shuffl was born. Its designed to work across multiple devices, with groups of friends or colleagues, as you can see below.
With the new app, they wanted to retain the simplicity of the initial idea, but add in a twist. They looked at the way people engage with sports today, and as many people would be connecting via mobile or tablet devices, they realised they had an opportunity to create a cross-platform, cross-device app, with a fun, gaming element.
The idea of Panini stickers was an inspiration, and so they started on mobile, creating simple, graphic ‘cards’ for each team, and then devised a mechanism (the ‘shuffl’) to allow users to flip the cards across each others screens, almost like a roulette wheel. Once they’d tested the app on a few users, they knew it would be much more engaging than a simple sweepstake team selector.
The app launched on 20th May, using social media and email contacts from the original Euro sweepstake. The app has been widely picked up, with over 1000 users signing up within 3 weeks.
Games are stored, tweeted and shared, so that everyone knows just who has who in the World Cup sweepstakes. They’re hoping to take the app further, adapting it with unique designs for all major sporting events such as Wimbledon, the Rugby World Cup, Euro 2016 and beyond. Co-founder of Marmalade on Toast is Simon Harmer;
“Every time I play Shuffl with friends or colleagues, they love it. Its very addictive – my 6-aside team has so far racked up 4 different sweepstakes! I’ve only managed to pick up France and Italy so far, so I’m pushing for another one! The joy is watching the teams spin past on the devices, and waiting to see where Brazil or Spain drop in!”
Good luck to them! Give it a try and run your office sweepstake from http://justshuffl.com
On Monday 23rd June I’ll have the pleasure of being on a panel as part of Birkbeck University’s Business Week (which runs from 23rd – 26th). The panel, as the title suggests, is quite a broad one but will mainly be looking at the ‘mega sport events’ such as London 2012 and the FIFA World Cup in Brazil. It’s an event I’m really looking forward to, there are more details on it below…
You can get more details on the event and find the booking link (it’s free to attend) on http://www.bbk.ac.uk/bizweek
Digital technology and social media are playing an increasingly important role in the business of sport, particularly in the management of sports events. This keynote and panel session will discuss contemporary usage and possible future trends in digital technology and social media in sport. The keynote speaker, Richard Ayers, is the founder and CEO of Seven League, a digital media firm with a specialism in sport. He has worked as Head of Digital for Manchester City FC and is also proud to have helped Channel 4 with their digital coverage of the Paralympics 2012.
Richard will discuss his rich experience in the field, drawing on his knowledge of music, film, newspapers and publishing, as well as sport. In particular, he will examine:
- the capacity sports organisations have to facilitate and moderate engagement from various audiences;
- the ways in which social media can be used for the good of sport; and
- issues around data visualisation and ‘datatainment’.
The panel members will each introduce themselves, explain their backgrounds and views on digital technology and social media and discuss how these technologies were used in London 2012 and how they are being (and will be) used in Rio. In particular, the panellists will discuss what the challenges are that sports organisations and host cities face in this field. There will also be an opportunity for a lively question-and-answer session.
- Alex Balfour: Former Chief Digital Officer at the Engine Group and Head of New Media at LOCOG
- Tom Thirwall: CEO, Bigballs Films
- Dan McLaren: Founder and Editor-in-Chief, UK Sports Network
- Gill Leivesley: Management Consultant, Takeout
- George Rousoss: Professor of Pervasive Computing, Birkbeck (CS & IS)
Topics will include the ability of sports organisations to facilitate and moderate engagement from various audiences, the ways in which social media can be used for the good of sport and challenges around data visualisation and ‘datatainment’.