Advertising Technology Advertising Technology, Opinion | August 31, 2017

Evangelos Sideras talks to SportsPro about how brands can create relevant content to engage a growing social media audience

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Evangelos Sideras, joint managing director, UK at Media iQ, discusses how brands can create better, more relevant content to engage a growing social media audience. Excerpts:

Evangelos Sideras Joint managing director, UK
Evangelos Sideras, Joint managing director, UK 

Wimbledon and Rolex, the Uefa Champions League and Heineken, the Six Nations and RBS – these brand and sporting event couples have become as famous as Brad and Angelina. Big money coupled with traditional broadcasting has enabled them to dominate the sporting events they sponsor.

Traditional broadcasting is no longer the only platform from which sporting fans are engaging with their favourite sporting occasions, however. Twitter, Facebook, and other social media channels are becoming increasingly popular as fans are able to view the latest highlights, get expert analysis, or rant and rave to an audience outside of their living room or local pub about the injustice of a call that didn’t go their team’s way. The ability to engage in back-and-forth conversations with likeminded fans is what makes these digital platforms a growing force in sports broadcasting and, in turn, a force in sports advertising. It’s no wonder that Twitter, Facebook, Amazon, and YouTube are competing for live streaming rights for major golf tournaments and Premier League matches.

If you were one of the estimated 1 billion people across the world to watch some sort of coverage of Wimbledon, you couldn’t miss one of the many Rolex and Slazenger logos plastered around the stadium. Slazenger even celebrated its 115th year as the official supplier of tennis balls to Wimbledon – one of the longest partnerships in sporting goods history. To capitalise on this, the brand engaged with fans through the hashtag #115YearsOfSlaz in a giveaway of two tickets to Wimbledon. In the first week of the tournament alone, #115YearsOfSlaz featured in more tweets (6,172) than the eventual Wimbledon champion #Federer (1,019), the hometown favourite, #Murray (3,040), and the tournament itself #Wimbledon2017 (4,871). This was a good example of how a brand took advantage of other channels to engage with fans and build on its brand visibility at the tournament.