Back from SEAT Conference in Kansas City, what a great conference. This special Sports Geek Podcast episode is a full audio replay of my #SEAT2013 presentation with Philippe Dore from NASCAR. You can follow along via on Slideshare below or download from Slideshare.
More SEAT related podcasts coming up soon, so stay tuned.
More specifically, in this podcast you’ll find out about:
- What makes up the digital campaign trifecta
- Why you’ll want to visit Western Australia for next holiday
- How Nike activated Kobe Bryant using Twitter BEFORE he joined Twitter
- How Australian Open & Wimbledon developed infotainment for digital fans
- How you can activate a stadium even when it is EMPTY
- How NBA & NFL teams activate off-season events like Draft night
Follow the slides as you listen…
Resources from the episode
- Find Philippe Dore on Twitter (@digitaldore) and Linkedin
- West Coast Eagles Nic Nat video
- Kobe Bryant Black Mamba Nike activation video
- Mobilizing 12th man case study and video
- MLB Moundball
- Nike She Runs The Night Video
- True Blue HQ activation using Digital Cheer Squad
- Sports Trendsmap #ALvMU Case Study
- Introducing Sports Trendsmap on Ep 11 with #ALvMU case study
- SEAT 2013 Fan Cam – Tag yourself & connect.
- Follow #SEAT2013 for more updates from SEAT Conference
Videos from presentation
On iTunes? Subscribe to the Sports Geek Podcast in iTunes, if you liked the episode please leave comment or rating.
If you have a question for the podcast please leave it using Speakpipe plugin on the left of this page.
Sean: Welcome to Episode 13 of the Sports Geek podcast, presented by SEAT Conference. Today’s episode is a special replay of my presentation, “Digital Case Studies Explained,” from SEAT 2013 with Philippe Dore from NASCAR.
DJ Joel: Welcome to the Sports Geek podcast. The podcast built for sports digital and sports digital professionals. Your host, Sean Callanan.
Sean: Thanks, DJ Joel. My name is Sean Callanan from Sports Geek, and thank you for the prompts on Twitter and LinkedIn asking where the next Sports Geek episode is. Traveling on crutches and trying to record a podcast is pretty much tough work. That’s why there has been a little break.
If you’ve been following tweets, I was in Kansas City for SEAT 2013. This episode of the Sports Geek podcast is actually a recording of the presentation that I did with Philippe Dore, who’s the Senior Director of Digital Services at NASCAR.
We walked through a bunch of case studies around the world in this presentation. There’s a few spots in there where we show some video clips as well as the slides from the presentation. They’ll all be accessible from the show notes. If you go to sportsgeekhq.com/13, you’ll be able to download them.
As far as all content from SEAT, I’ve got a couple of other podcasts. I did a bunch of interviews with some of my mates at SEAT. There’ll be Episode 14 and 15, will be very SEAT-heavy with some interviews with guys from the NBA, MLB, NFL, and of course Christine Stoffel, who put the conference on and did a remarkable job with over 450 people in Kansas City.
It was great to see the CRM and the digital tracks growing from what was a small base last year in Boston. I expect all of you listening to the podcast to be at SEAT 2014 in New York.
For now, we’re still looking at SEAT 2013. Here is my presentation, “Digital Case Studies Explained,” with Philippe Dore from NASCAR. Enjoy.
Sean: We’ll get started. Thanks a lot for coming along. My name is Sean Callanan, and I’ll be presenting Philippe here. We’ll be going through some digital campaigns. I’ll let you get things started.
Philippe: Absolutely. This is looking forward to Sean presenting, because usually he’s the moderator and talking all the time. We pulled some good case studies here; hopefully you’ll find them interesting.
Let’s jump right in. We discuss what makes a digital campaign successful. We call it a trifecta here.
Sean: Yeah, so the first thing was around content. We’re all in the content business. We’re fighting against Fox, ESPN, Sporting News, all these other places. My campaign should be around our content and pushing it out. We’ll be focusing on campaigns that profile content.
The next one we’re looking at is engagement. Everything we’re doing in social is about engagement, engaging the fans and deepening the ties with the fans. A lot of the campaigns, again, that we’ve got through the deck are on engagement.
Then we’ve got one more component, which is for our friends in the other track, which is data. If we’re going to have a campaign, having some component that, gets some email, geo-location data as I was just talking about before with mobile.
If you can hit the trifecta and hit those three boxes, you’re doing well. But you don’t have to with every single campaign. We’ll just go through a couple campaigns and show that they’ve got different focus and what they were trying to do. How they did it, how they went, and for some of them, what we might do differently.
Philippe: The first one, Sean, is West Coast . . . your part of the world, in Australia.
Sean: Yeah, West Coast Eagles are an Australian Rules football team. Just to give you a background of what they’re like, they’ve got a full stadium; they’ve got a waiting list. The fan base is getting older, but they’ve got these waiting lists. They want to keep engaging.
Usually they would do a season membership renewal, sort of TBC, at the start of the season. Since they didn’t need to sell the tickets this last year, they just went with a real brand campaign and just wanted to build excitement around the brand.
They did that around a video campaign. This is one of the videos.
Recording: [music 05:14 to 05:38]. Coming down to the beach helps me to relax. Memories of how close we were last season keeps the fire burning inside.
I know we’re close to something special.
Childhood heroes made me believe anything is possible. There’s an excitement within the group for the season ahead. It’s not hard to find inspiration around here.
Sean: Those videos were four weeks out from the season, when the fans were just craving access to the players and starting to build up the season. Mark LeCras was the guy running the pass. The next video was a backstory to him.
They ran the video campaign, they pushed that to YouTube, they promoted it both on YouTube and Facebook. Really, the fans just rallied around it. It was really good to run that high end content. I’m sure you all now want to have a holiday in Western Australia. They could probably do that as a tourism ad. That’s the West Coast one.
This one is the Minnesota Timberwolves. Again, a content play around the NBA draft. The NBA draft gets stacks of coverage on ESPN, but once your peak happens, they start to focus on every other team.
What the Timberwolves have done in the draft the last three years—they’re hoping to not do this eventually and make the playoffs—but what they have done is been doing a large, streaming show from their venue and have a big fan event. They have talking heads talking about the draft, interviews with fans.
Over the last few years there’s been increasing sponsorship and activations around it. Again, really profiling their talent as far as their digital team. Their fans really rally around that site for that night.
This is a close one to my heart, because this is my scar brother, Kobe Bryant. I don’t know if you saw this campaign. This was a campaign from I think it was 2011 that Nike ran. We’ve got a video that pretty much explains how it ran.
Recording: Kobe Bryant transformed without warning into an unstoppable force.
Interviewer: “Black Mamba,” what is “Black Mamba” all about?
Kobe: That’s my alter ego. When you step on the basketball court, you’ve got to get into another frame of mind.
Recording: “Black Mamba,” an alter ego beloved by fans and feared by the competition. We set out to mimic Kobe’s physical transformation into Black Mamba on nikebasketball.com, so when Kobe transforms, the site transforms with him.
Since fans routinely call out the Black Mamba on social networks, a custom made Twitter algorithm was programmed to generate and monitor real-time, global social chatter to transform the site using Kobe-related tweets as a trigger.
Every time the Mamba struck, fans’ social chatter would cause the automated site to change from normal Kobe state to the Black Mamba state, once 1,750 tweets per hour were surpassed. During each of these Mamba moments, the site will offer exclusive access to content for the next six hours, like Kobe video images, personalized wallpapers, and transfer fans to an exclusive Nike ID zoomed Kobe.
As Mamba moments grew closer, the traffic on nikebasketball.com exploded as social chatter spread across the web. Our real-time Twitter tracker shows fans exactly how many Kobe-related tweets were being posted at that moment, how many were needed to transform the site and unlock the Mamba content.
Fans around the world were watching, working collectively to try to push the needle over the edge. Every time a Mamba moment happened, Nike Basketball spread the word with posts on social networks across the globe.
As a special surprise for fans, a short film directed by Robert Rodriguez, starring Kanye and the Black Mamba himself a couple days before All-Star Weekend, driving even more traffic to the site.
Then at the All-Star game on February 20th, Kobe Bryant scored a game high of 37 points, on route to winning his fourth career all-star MVP award. Global Black Mamba social chatter lit up the boards. The site transformed from Kobe to Black Mamba in the first quarter.
Notifications went out across Facebook, Twitter and We Boo. Over two million fans visited nikebasketball.com to watch Kobe transform into the Black Mamba. Night in and night out, the site continues to reflect Kobe’s transformation on the court. The Black Mamba may strike without warning, but not without reward for fans across the world.
Sean: Yeah, so that one, just an example where it’s hit the market on all counts. Producing the killer content, that you can only get the content if you get the engagement, getting the fans riled up on Twitter. This was all done before Kobe was even on Twitter. Without even having him being the one that drives it.
Phenomenal campaign, and I hope he makes a comeback from his Achilles, because it’ll give me hope.
Philippe: Again, this is a great execution. We’re finding a theme here, and you’ll see that the best executions are during live events. It’s nice to see that as he’s playing, again. A lot of the other case studies here that we have are very, very focused on live, engaging content.
This is another one from the tennis world. I’ve been partnering with IBM for years because they’ve got pretty cool slam trackers, reliable results. They kicked it up a notch this year and added a social component.
You can actually measure tweets, the trending module, and also what I like with this one is that they also added sentiment. Negative, positive. It gives it a little kick to more than having to show just who’s trending and who’s got the most tweets or something like that. Pretty cool execution here from IBM and the U.S. Open.
Sean: Again, it reinforces, if you go to the next part, it shows the tweets coming in for Andy Murray. We all know that Twitter especially works well in live sport, and to a certain degree, sport has made Twitter. Because that’s when it comes to life.
We will then pretty much follow it up with something similar, and so we’ve got that info-tainment sort of space. Taking all those stats and repurposing it.
You can take this engagement piece and make it part of your content strategy. If your graphic’s a really hot part of content marketing, you can show the buzz. It’s a good way of expressing to the fans that they’re part of a bigger collective. It gives them a bit of a push and shows the buzz around the world and in the media that Wimbledon have provided throughout the tournament.
Philippe: Yes, and the geo-mapping, we’ve got several other examples here. Thinks like, here’s a good example here. Why don’t you talk to us about this one?
Sean: This is one that we did three weeks ago. We were planning to do it, and then we were lucky enough that Manchester United decided to join Twitter.
You might have seen trendsmap.com before. It has local versions and global versions. It shows trends from Twitter on a map, which is why the name Trends Map.
What we’ve done, because the guys who built it are actually based out of Melbourne, we made a product out of it and allowed them to build a product that can be pivoted around sport. In this case we tracked a game they hashtagged “#ManUnited” and “#TheALeague.” The A League is the Australian MLS.
We’re able to show the trends around the world. Heat maps in both Australia and in the UK. We’re able to bubble up the popular content from an image point of view, and also the videos. Any Vines that were being shared and re-tweeted by fans, just click up and we’ll show more. They’re all able to be played in line, as well as showing what popular users . . .
And if you go down one more, it also would profile the top tweets. A couple of things that we learned, especially having a David and Goliath battle in this space with Manchester United in three weeks. Who was watching when they joined Twitter and they were adding followers by the thousands by the minute?
People were going, “oh, I’ve got more followers than Man United.” Not anymore. They’ve got so many followers, they dominated that top board. We’re going to most likely break that out to be different teams.
The other thing they also showed is the popular links that were being shared by fans. Again, another way, those links are hot, they can go back to your site. Also we profiled all the fans that were sharing illegal content. We had to put measures in to say, “we don’t want those links on this page.”
It’s a good way to get fans back to your site. Similar to the Wimbledon theme, we took content from this, back end analytics, and we repurposed it back to social, to tell the fans hey, way to go, you’re part of this.
We sent out half-time tweets telling them what the top cities were, how many tweets were coming in, what the map looked like, just to repurpose it and take it through.
This one, Philippe, you had this one.
Philippe: Yeah, this is an example from earlier this year from Underarm. Pretty good execution. It seemed like they invested quite a bit of money. They went multi-channel, made a lot of noise to it. They’re basically asking the fans or the consumer to use the hashtag “#Iwill,” offering giveaways for are they going to do something great this year.
Sean: Pretty much, yeah. They were just asking to people to write or share a photo. When I first looked at this I thought it looks great, but they didn’t really bring the social component until the last bit.
They said yeah, you can write on the wall. If you keep clicking through, and then it asks you at the end, I’ll share this. The incentive wasn’t there for it to really go far. If they had said, “oh, sign in with Facebook,” hit the button, it’s automatically going to get shared.
Try the email piece, but again, it wasn’t mandatory. I haven’t got the data as far as what they secured, but had they flipped—and the next slide, I think, shows “thank you for sharing your message. Please tweet it.”
If you move that to the front, like we were saying before with the apps, if you give people the sign-in and social connections at the front, the likelihood that they’ll share is much greater.
This one is a really unique one from Tunisia. Just watch the video and see what they did.
Sean: Yeah, so that one’s a pretty amazing case study. They didn’t have Wi-Fi problems on that day.
It just shows you, I think just how you can engage that fan at home, and thinking outside the box with some activations. Pretty phenomenal story with having to run out there without any fans at all, and being able to connect those fans in that sort of crowd source, make them feel part of it.
Philippe: Yeah, that’s the lesson. Be as creative, as crazy as you can. I think initially Sean wanted me to translate the French to English, but that subtitle appeared.
Sean: This one, I don’t know if you’ve seen it. It’s Mound Ball. It’s run by the guys at Major League Baseball. You’ll be able to play it tonight because there’s a Royales mound, but this is just an example of a pure engagement piece. Just having fun on the platform.
The way Mound Ball works is if the pitcher leaves the ball on the base, then they’re going to give away a prize. If he doesn’t, they’re not. They’ve got these fans now tuning in to see where the ball is going to be in between innings, and doing it via Twitter.
It’s completely stupid, but they’ve now got—I think you, Philippe—they launched it a couple weeks ago. They’re only doing a couple teams at the moment, but they’ve already got 5,000 followers.
It’s just, again, that thinking outside the box, how can we engage our fans in a weird way? We’re talking in some sessions earlier today, if you have a team that’s not winning or things aren’t going well, how can you make these silly events into some sort of activation, into some sort of engagement play with the fans?
It seems to be working pretty well for MLB. I’m going to be tweeting Mound Ball now tonight to see. I’ll be watching very closely at the end of innings to see where the ball is placed. Again, just shows you the advantages of just playing on the platform for what they are. It’s a really good spot for Twitter.
This one you brought, Philippe, from Tour de France?
Philippe: Yes, Tour de France in France, obviously. Good execution here from French TV. Basically it’s an Instagram base. At each stop, people were asked to upload their Instagram photo, and obviously with their geo-location. We created this entire record, document here that they put online here.
Sean: This one’s great because it’s crowd sourcing, it shows how colorful and awesome it is to be in the Tour de France. It’s perfect for Instagram, because you’ve got all the crazy filters. Everything, when you produce an Instagram photo, is beautiful. Or so people think.
It shows all the color. Again, because Instagram is more geo-friendly than Twitter, it’s great to be able to show all the content. For me, this one is really great because it’s profiling the fan content. We’ve done stuff with tournaments and stadiums, getting your fans to take those shots and send them in is a great way of doing it. Being able to activate a random map and show off what the fans are seeing is a really good way of doing it.
For example. This is similar to the Timberwolves stuff around the draft. This is the Falcons social hub. Again, making the draft an event and giving them a place to consume everything from a point of view of social content. So sharing both their content and some of the fans’.
It’s getting into that social curation space. Which I think is good, because you want to make sure your fans are connecting with other fans. I think, I can’t remember what session it was before, when Chris was saying how he’s got 20 or 30 of these brand champions. You need to be publicizing those brand champions in things like this so they know they’re doing the right thing.
Philippe: Again, those work well during an event. Use it for an entire season it can get old.
Sean: Yeah, so again, this is during the draft. They’re craving for information, they don’t have as much. This kind of activation works really well for that.
Philippe: These guys did as well.
Sean: I think this is with Wayne. I’m going to get a nod at the back, yeah, this is with Wayne.
Again, ask the fans questions, profile your content around the draft. Again, it just gives them that different . . . Twitter’s good to give those different visualizations. Because not everyone follows everyone that they need to do. Not everyone knows how to follow a hashtag.
Fans still need these kind of visualizations to understand why they should be on Twitter, or why they should be on Pinterest or why they should be on Tumblr. You want to be able to show those different representations of what they think might be normal, but shown in a different way to say, “oh, that’s why I want to be accessing that content.”
If you scroll down, it’s bringing all the tweets.
Philippe: I like how they added interactivity. It’s one thing to just bring in photos and call it a day, but if you take it to the next level and have people tweet or even, I would like to see maybe an input box there. Maybe you can pre-populate a hashtag.
Sean: This one is another Nike activation that they did around a women’s running race in Sydney. I’ll let the video explain it, and then I’ll talk a little bit about some of what they did with Facebook to integrate the social component.
Recording: Running community, Nike wasn’t seen as a credible choice for serious runners. In fact, most female runners wore Nike from head to ankle, but found it hard to commit to wearing Nike on their feet.
We also uncovered the truth that when women ran, they ran alone, and were left to overcome their fears and achieve their goals by themselves. To us, this seemed at odds with women’s natural inclination to discuss, share, and overcome barriers together.
In light of this, our idea was simple. As a female runner, you’re fast, stronger, and more powerful when you’re part of a group than you could ever be as an individual. There is true power in numbers.
We used this thought to ignite a community of female runners, empowering them to redefine their sport and change the way they train forever. We started our conversation with social media with a rally cry for change, stimulating chat around the barriers that women faced.
It was during this conversation that we realized we needed to tackle the biggest barrier at all, running alone at night. We began by recruiting women who already had the courage to run in the dark. We received hundreds of responses from women whose responses inspired an online short film.
Woman: The more of us that run, the brighter we can burn.
Recording: Next, we challenged our community by announced that we would hold a 13K night race The film also acted as a registration device that could be personalized to every runner and passed onto their friends, celebrating grass roots runners across gyms, online, in store, print, and outdoor.
Which in turn inspired other women to join. Every piece of communication incorporated an invitation to a women’s only event
Daniella: Hey, I’m Daniella.
Veronica: I’m Veronica. If you’re interested in night running, then come for a run with us at Pier Market.
Recording: Allowing women to not only train for the 13K run, but connect with other women along the way. Trying to unite female runners at every touch point, enabling them a way to share their stories, goals, and achievements. Race Night became a celebration. For one night, women turned the tables on the dark.
We smashed down our own barriers too, exceeding all expectations in KPIs. For us, this demonstrates the power of a culturally connected idea, one that helps a community to form, shifts perceptions, and ultimately changes how people interact with a brand.
We set out to shake up running for women, and sparked a movement that unleashed a powerful, thriving community. A community that’s still running.
Sean: That campaign was heavily integrated with Facebook. Like they said there they had a Facebook registration process, so obviously that’s terrific from a data point of view. We’re getting the data from all the registrants.
The engagement and the content side of things, again, absolutely killing it as far as the content they were producing, but then also getting their fans to produce it.
The race itself, because everyone had registered with Facebook and everyone had the Nike Plus tracking devices, as the women were coming up to the 5K mark, their Facebook avatar came up on the digital screen and said, “keep going.”
They were like oh and charging on. They really stepped up, I guess, the integration with the Facebook Connect and registration and put it through the whole race. Really powerful way of developing a community around the event.
This one you sent through, pretty recent.
Philippe: Yes, yes. I thought this was great, again, engaging the fans. PGA championship with Jack Nichols here. They’ve allowed the fans to pick the pin position.
Sean: In the end, this is just a multiple choice sweepstakes competition, but the fact that they’ve got the content pieces there, the fans can check the flyover, it’s got a bit of buzz. It’s really high value for a golf fan to be able to say they’re going to pick the pin. I’m sure there’ll be a few golfing buddies who’ve got bragging rights.
That was obviously right. It’s more unique than just saying, “tell us who’s your favorite golfer,” or “when do you play golf,” that kind of thing. I think it worked really well. It got really good press as well, because it was in that crowd sourcing space, occasionally allowing the fans to decide.
Sometimes you’ve got to be careful. Sometimes the fans don’t know what they’re doing. In this case, if they’re happy with one of the four options, it’s a good outcome.
Philippe: It’s funny, because they actually make an impact. It’s not just “what do you think,” and “oh, I would love to see this.” It’s actually things [inaudible 31:45]. We had a similar example at NASCAR, where we asked the fans to vote on the format for an all-star race. Do you want 30 laps, do you want 60 laps, we let them decide and he goes for it. Nice way for them to feel . . .
Sean: It gives them that emotional connection, because they’re feeling like a part of the decision process.
This one is one that we do with the Auckland Blues, using digital cheer squad where it was pretty much rewarding fans for what they were doing on social networks, so Facebook and Twitter. It wasn’t exactly the platform that did it, it was the way that the Blues ran it.
They really focused on servicing these fans, because they really added super-fans. Some of the stuff that generated out of it was, they found that the fans started congregating and sitting together. Now they’re going to have a specific bay so these fans can all sit together.
They started running events specifically for these super-fans, and gained really great results because these fans were trained on what they wanted to do. They would stand in front of the sponsored banner. They knew they had to Facebook it and tweet it and Instagram it.
It’s worked out really well. To the point where, we’ve got to the point where we say, “oh, don’t forget to thank the sponsor,” because they provided True Blue HQ, and they sent 194 tweets saying “thanks, guys.”
They’re Barfoot and Thompson. They’re not in the technical space. They’re a real estate agent. The social manager at Barfoot and Thompson loves it, because their feed is full of people praising how awesome they are.
I’ve actually got a meeting with them next week when I get back. I’m hoping we get the research back that says yes, we sold a house because all of the Blues fans have been tweeting about us as a real estate agent all winter.
Then from a content point of view, we’ve been doing stuff like infographics around the stats of what the fans have been doing, but then also profiling the fans with a simple “fan of the week.” Because we’ve connected all of those fans, the amount of digital back slapping that happens when you announce a fan of the week—because they all know each other, they’re all friends now.
They’ve met in real life. Which I think is having those fan events and connecting those digital fans, just locks them in. They won’t always be talking about your team, they become friends. Every time the Blues announce a fan of the week, they all get retweeted from everyone in the list. They’re all pretty pleased with themselves.
The other key component of it was putting the ladder and integrating it with the rest of the site. Again, fans were pretty happy to see their face on the regular site.
Philippe: You have the sponsors, the sponsoring product right there, right?
Philippe: We’re seeing a lot of that. Our partner is just asking for banner ads, things like that, they want to engage with content, and social’s a great way to do it. We’re cooking a lot of things like that at NASCAR.
Sean: This is another one that again goes back to the map theme, and there’s more around engagement and connecting your fans. I’m anxious to see, you’ve had this out for a while. It’s still live.
Effectively it allows you to tag where you are and find out where all the Manchester City fans are. It’s a terrific data play. You go to, say you want to tag yourself. Similar to the Fan Cam stuff. You’ve got to give your data to tag yourself, but they’re able to show that there’s over 24,000 fans there. Then you can find other fans.
You can go and put someone’s name in who you know is a Manchester fan, and they’ll say, “oh, he’s in London.” You can connect with your friends or tag your friends and that kind of thing. It’s about making a connection, but also showing that there’s 482 in Melbourne and there’s 1,100 in the eastern seaboard of the U.S. It just shows there’s like people around you.
Pretty much with Manchester City, they’ve extended this now and they’re building localized websites for different regions around the world, pretty much based on this data. They know they’ve got the fans there, so they can now pull off the sites.
This one was primarily a data play with the Melbourne Storm. The video there is, we ran a competition saying hey, come along the journey jersey. Come along the journey with the finals. We asked them intimate details, and we built this jersey with all the fans’ names on it.
We tell the fans it’s going to be in the locker room during the playoffs. The players will run past it, they’ll touch it. Or we’ll tell them that they’ll touch it. It was their way of being in the locker room during the playoffs.
We initially did it, then we produced a secondary one to have it out in the concourse, and fans could get their photo in front of it. In a week, I think we collected 1,500 emails of fans that wanted to be part of it. We then added a season ticket holder base to the jersey, so it had 1,500 in the end.
On top of getting all those social attractions that the fans gave it, it got in the media with the local television and the broadcasters showing off the jersey, both in the locker room and then around grand final week. All’s well that ends well win the championship last year.
Storm fans have found memories of the journey jersey, so we’re now trying to figure out how we can take it to the next level this year.
Philippe: That’s great, and again, it’s one thing to upload a photo to an Instagram sort of thing to see an execution like this. We’ve done it on some cars as well. [inaudible 38:16] has done it, Noonan’s done it. Put your photo and you get your little avatar on the car.
We’re working on another one right now for the Chase. We’ll feature a prize winner, their Twitter handle on the car. We’re working on that right now.
Sean: This is one of the last ones I want to look at. We thank you, Sir Alex. Man United said goodbye to Sir Alex Ferguson. Again, they weren’t on Twitter at this stage, but from a content and engagement and a data point of view, they actually smashed it.
They built this mini-site. They integrated with, they did some work with Twitter and pretty much pushed out the hashtag, “#ThankyouSirAlex,” which was trending worldwide.
What they did do is ask all their fans to post messages. If you’re already in the Manchester United system, you could just login and leave your message for Sir Alex. What they did is they sent it out to their 35 million Facebook fan base, a ridiculous number.
This is the picture that they put up on Facebook. “Send Sir Alex your thank you message, and we’re going to create him a book.” They could’ve just said “give us your email, please.” Because all they did was send them to a Buddy Media Facebook tab that said email, name, date of birth, and 25 words to Sir Alex.
The good thing is they didn’t just stop there. They took all that content and they created a book, leather-bound it. They did a couple of different versions. They got Sir Alex to sign it and there you go, now it’s a prize, it’s a limited edition piece.
Yeah, 161,000 people liked that post. They really capitalized on the traffic that they got for Sir Alex signing. For them they, like I said, smashed this activation out of the park. They knew they were going to get great engagement from their fans.
The unfortunate thing is four days later, because they had to replace, obviously, Sir Alex Ferguson, and David Moyes was keyed to take over. Now he’s the new manager. Unfortunately, and we all have mistakes, they tweeted out the link to the app to say “welcome David Moyes” two days before he signed.
He was still working at Chelsea. They deleted the tweet, but you can’t delete a tweet. It’s gone. They did everything right for Sir Alex, but it was a little bit awkward for the first day or two when they were announcing David Moyes. Trying to follow the same feed.
If you look at some of the data that was coming through from a Twitter point of view, again, for a team that wasn’t on Twitter, to get some of that content was pretty phenomenal.
Just to wrap up and not go too long, because I can only stand so along in this. The main things, when you are going to go and do a campaign, you’re going to be tackling one of these three things.
You’re going to promote your content, engage your fans, and get data. I don’t think you need to do all three with every one. You will have ones that just naturally do all three, or a killer like Black Mamba or the Nike one that do all three.
Then you’ll have ones like Mound Ball that’s just pure engagement. I think it is important to know that you want to try to tackle one of those three and have a goal around that. Which leads us to our takeaways from this session, is to first of all to know your goal, to know what you’re trying to achieve out of it.
You want to know what your goal is. If your goal is engagement, cute can work, but you’ve got to make sure you push that.
This one, I call it “market your marketing.” Obviously a lot of teams put a lot of effort into building some activation, and then just push it out and think it’s going to happen.
It’s bit like the brief, “can you make me a viral video?” Which no one can ever do when you ask them that. This one is market your marketing. How are you pushing this out? Where are you advertising? Are you advertising in-stadium?
Are you augmenting it with Facebook ads or Google ads, or promoting it with Twitter? Because you can’t just expect oh, our fans will just love that and eat it up.
There’s nothing worse than spending a lot of time and money and effort putting something together, and then stop putting in that effort once you’ve pushed it out. You’ve really got to still market it via all your channels.
Philippe: Remember the data from your initial slides. Make sure you get something out of it. Use connect, you can get a lot of data out of Facebook. If you’re doing a fan cam contest, you can get registering, you can get an ROI. I’ll get something out of the programs.
Sean: You’ve got to make it fun. You’ve got to think about it from a fan point of view. I know all of us will have seen ad sponsor promotions and we’ve had pushback, so the fans won’t want it.
You really need to have that fan hat on. Will they think it’s fun? Like Mark was saying, will it have the appeal for them? Their Instagram shot gets on the screen, or they might have a tour or something. It really does have to be fun and enticing to the fan.
That pretty much wraps up our showcase of different digital campaigns.
Philippe: Global showcase.
Sean: Global showcase. Glad to have the Tunisians involved. More than happy to take any questions or talk about different parts of digital campaigns.
Go to the next slide. If this is recorded properly, this will be a future Sports Geek podcast. If it didn’t record properly, Philippe and I will be doing this again and recording this for a future Sports Geek podcast. Hopefully it’s recorded, and if it’s not, then we’ll be back on Skype and recording it again.
Recording: Please leave a review on iTunes. Go to sportsgeekhq.com/itunes. Find all Sports Geek podcasts at sportsgeekhq.com/sgp. Thanks for listening to the Sports Geek podcast.