Playing Social Media Ball

By on February 3, 2015
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Although it didn’t break the internet, Super Bowl XLIX (that’s Super Bowl 49 for the Roman numeral-averse) broke records to become the ‘most-tweeted’ NFL-related event and American sporting event in history.

The 2014 FIFA World Cup Semi-Final between Germany and Brazil continues to hold the record as the biggest sporting event in Twitter history with 35.6 million tweets. But, Monday morning’s Super Bowl XLIX still scored an impressive second with 28.4 million tweets posted from kick-off to 30 minutes after the game, with the game saving interception pass clocking an estimated 395,000 tweets per minute.

Even over at Facebook, it was estimated that about 65 million people talked about the game and that there were some 265 million NFL-related individual posts, likes, and comments.

For companies spending millions of marketing dollars to get as broad an exposure as possible for their products during these games, these numbers can mean a huge turnover BUT…

…that’s only as long as they are marketed correctly.

During the Super Bowl, the clear winner was #LikeAGirl by the feminine hygiene brand Always. This hashtag was still trending on Monday after the game. A longer version of the same advert has been watched on YouTube over 50 million times. These are the kind of numbers companies used to only dream of.

There are also marketing misses.

For example, Nationwide found out the costly way that their advert — about a boy listing down everything he couldn’t do because he had died in an accident — was just too much of a downer for a Super Bowl game. Way to kill the mood, Nationwide.

It just goes to show that, much like the Super Bowl, social media marketing campaigns for the big games require a lot of careful crafting, a plan designed to win, and a highly predictive visualization of potential results.

If anything, it would be great to end up like Mr. Left Shark — modest costing, modest expectations that ended up generating a bigger buzz than Katy Perry’s performance even after the games. But we can’t all be that lucky. Sometimes, a plan with high stakes and high expectations can end up, as it did, as the “worst play call in Super Bowl history.”

Such is the nature of the Super Bowl games. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. BUT what matters more, as it does in social media marketing, is how much you learn from every game and how much you play to win. Every. Time.

So, let’s play ball!

 

 

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
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