As one of the biggest sporting events on the globe, the World Cup is sure to stir up a lot of buzz and social media trends on sites like Twitter and Facebook. To capitalize on this year’s World Cup, both social media sites made sure they were prepared to host all the online action. Check out what they did to get ready:
Started the hype early
Before the World Cup even started, Twitter released a blog post called “Follow the #WorldCup action on Twitter” that explained how soccer fans could use Twitter to keep up with all of the World Cup excitement. In the post, Twitter equipped their social media soccer fans with appropriate hashtags, such as #WorldCup and provided USA fans with the Twitter handle for the official team account (@ussoccer), as well as a list of all the official Twitter handles for U.S. players (See the list here).
On top of that, the Twitter blog post also provided lists of most-followed players, Twitter accounts for other World Cup teams and players, as well as reasons to follow the World Cup news via Twitter. One good reason? Twitter already has a reputation for existing in real time, making it an obvious place to follow all the World Cup news, conversations, and reactions in real time: a pretty strong argument for serious soccer fans.
Made access easy
The event page not only posts the World Cup schedule and connects fans to official team accounts, but it also streams live tweets from the Twitter-verse into one place. That way, those trying to track the latest action— whether they are at home, in a meeting, or out on the town— can easily access stats and details quickly. An added bonus, photos and video from the tweets are available in the sidebar, making it even easier to feel like you have instant, behind-the-scenes access.
But Twitter wasn’t the only player in the World Cup social media trends. Facebook also prepared for the big event. Here’s how:
News Access and Detailed Play-by-Plays
Facebook also created a special event page: the Trending World Cup page. A place where users can get updates on the latest goals, matches, and stories, this Facebook page gives Twitter some real-time competition. It features a special feed with real-time posts from friends and updates from relevant players and teams, as well as the latest scores and highlights from the matches. [image]
For those who want to dive deeper into the World Cup trivia, Facebook also provides an Interactive Map that lets users compare the number of fans that top players have, and where those fans are located around the world. To use the map, you select a player, and the map is automatically color-coded to see what countries or cities favor that player the most. Hover over any location to see that player’s regional popularity compared with the international average.
Facebook made it easy to share what World Cup match you’re watching with your Facebook friends. When you go to write a new status update, simply tap the smiley icon before sharing the post and select “Watching.” A drop-down list will appear, where you can select the game you are watching.
For the World Cup, Facebook also invented a character: the Facebook Ref. Complete with a backstory that explains his call to ref-dom and his passion for futbol, the Facebook ref comes complete with funny videos, game updates, and colorful commentary on trending World Cup topics (including the whole biting incident).
Plus, if you leave a comment for the Facebook Ref, he’s very likely to respond with another hilarious tidbit, making the Facebook Ref page a place where people can interact and easily share World-Cup-related content.
World Cup Social Media Stats
The World Cup generated an outpouring of social media trends and responses, at one point generating 10 times more searches in the U.S. than the NBA finals did. Here’s a few World Cup social media statistics:
- The opening match between Brazil and Croatia generated 12.2 million tweets.
- During the U.S. match with Ghana, men aged 25 to 34 were posting about it on Facebook the most, and 15 million interactions were generated on Facebook overall.
- After Clint Dempsey’s opening-minute goal against Ghana, his Twitter followers soared in number to about 27 times his normal number of daily followers.
- The Google Maps Street View Pegman is sporting a white t-shirt, black shorts, and a soccer ball during the World Cup.