Is the World Cup Emotive Marketing Nirvana?

Posted by on Jul 27, 2014 in News | No Comments

As far as evoking emotive feelings goes, there are few events on Earth that reach into people’s hearts like the World Cup. Being both a big sports fan and a web obsessive, I’ve loved watching both the web and the world become captivated by the whole event. This blogpost looks at some of the incredible ways the World Cup has grabbed our hearts and fingers as we type our thoughts live online.

2014 FIFA World Cup in Brasil

2014 FIFA World Cup in Brasil (Photo credit: alobos Life)

Is the World Cup the Most Emotive Event On The Planet?

The World Cup has thrilled the world for the past few weeks and now as it enters the final stages it is becoming clear what a huge event it has been for social media. By the number of tweets and Facebook mentions, it is clear that this has been the most emotive event that we have yet experienced.

The World Cup and the Social Explosion

For a few years social media has been a pretty good indicator of the interest that an event is generating. When there is a big event, whether a news story or sporting event, the tweets start flying and the social mentions start going through the roof. And it’s been the same with the World Cup.

Before it even began, the World Cup had generated 19 million mentions, revealed by an Adobe Systems study. And as the first games kicked off, that number rocketed. According to this infographic, there have been 350,000 tweets made every day about the World Cup.

Facebook says that 500 million of its users are football fans, 62% of whom use the network every day, so it’s easy to see how much influence it will have. We can even see which players generate the most interest. As of June 8th, 71,743 tweets related to Lionel Messi.

Facebook has apparently been the most popular way to communicate about the World Cup. Between the opening game on June 12 and June 19, there were over a billion Facebook interactions, making it the first ever event to reach this milestone. And in Brazil, WhatsApp was popular, with 57% of fans claiming they were planning to use it to communicate about the World Cup.

How the World Cup Was Interpreted

The great thing about an event like the World Cup is that there are many key moments to discuss, such as incredible goals, amazing saves and controversial decisions that are praised, condemned and hotly debated.

Tim Howard, the USA goalkeeper, became a social media phenomenon following his incredible saves in the loss against Belgium on July 1, and a hashtag called ‘ThingsTimHowardCouldSave’ began to circulate.

Another talking point, the infamous Luis Suarez bite, saw a whole slew of parodies go viral and even led to the creation of a Luis Suarez bottle opener.

Everyone’s Talking About It

As well as the social aspect, companies have used the World Cup in conversations with their customers to join in with the event. Competitions have been launched, new products have been released, and many companies have found a way to give their marketing a World Cup slant to take advantage of the emotive power of the event.

Domino’s predicted before the event that their World Cup demands would need the addition of 1300 new staff! McDonalds offered all football fans the chance to build their own fantasy team.

Two Screens Are Better than One

This is the first World Cup where people are watching the matches at the same time as they make comments on social media platforms. People are joining in with the event and becoming part of the conversation, which is increasingly the new way to do things. Indeed, many people now watch two screens at the same time, keeping one eye on the TV and the other on their Twitter feed.

Does this add to the experience? You could argue that it distracts from it, that people will be less immersed in the action and spending more time commenting on it than enjoying it. But this misses the point. People want to share the experience. They like to know that they are part of a conversation that is happening all over the world. Rather than distracting them, it draws them in further and they become part of the event.

The Growth of ‘In the Moment’ Marketing

The World Cup has demonstrated the importance of ‘in the moment’ marketing. Marketers are now targeting people during the event and basing their advertising on events as they happen and when passions are at their most intense.

By thinking quickly, marketers can release a promoted tweet that is relevant to an event that occurred minutes earlier and enjoy a greater chance of going viral. This type of “in the moment” marketing will only grow as people become used to instant and constant reactions to whatever is happening in the world, and eventually within their own world too.

What have been your favourite moments of the World Cup? How did you express them? Online? If so, where?