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Going big on match day: When content engagement equals ROI

By: Spyros Poulis

Social media engagement is the new success metric of choice for sports federations, teams and leagues. A recent survey by Altimeter found that engagement is the most favoured metric among content executives to track content performance, with 36% voting it the most commonly used metric, ahead of ‘conversion’ at only 17%, and ‘reach’ at a lowly 11%.  

Dizzying scale of sporting interest 

For the big sporting brands in particular, the scale offered by social media is extraordinary. On Facebook (at the time of writing), 75 million people like Manchester United. Serena Williams has more than 14 million Instagram followers, and Lewis Hamilton more than 27 million. Social presence also extends beyond major sports teams and stars to sponsors – Nike, for example, can claim billions of YouTube views.  

Across the pond, sporting appetites are, if anything, even greater. The 39 million NBA followers on Facebook show there’s huge interest in leagues, and even collegiate and varsity teams have a huge reach: Ohio State Football has 793,000 Facebook likes, Auburn Tigers a cool half-million. 

Find out how sports brands drive ROI – Download The Big Game report today 

There’s a good reason for these huge figures from a commercial perspective, because engagement equals ROI. By ensuring that key content is available quickly and easily on social channels, sports brands can maximise their market share, as well as drive additional monetisation of their content.  

The value of real-time action 

For example, clips of live action that are specifically of interest to sponsors can garner considerable additional engagement and traction on their social channels if the assets are made available to them as rapidly as possible in the right format. The sponsor not only feels they are getting their contractual obligations promptly and fairly, but overperformance here will make a substantial difference to traction – a fact that will not be forgotten when negotiations begin for the next season.  

Similarly, broadcasters, OTT channels and media partners all want their specific assets in as near real-time as possible, transparently, and in their preferred format to make their workflows easier and therefore delivery of content, faster.  

Managing content to maximise ROI 

Imagen’s report, ‘The Big Game: How Sports brands manage social content on match day’, takes a deep dive into the emerging tactics of some of the biggest sporting brands on the planet. It looks at how these brands are slicing and dicing content ever-more granularly for social media in order to maximise engagement. These include: 

  • How Scottish Rugby Union approaches the challenges of publishing a variety of digital content on match days. 
  • How The International Cricket Council (ICC) manages their content pitch-side. 
  • The tools ATP Media and the Premier League use to manage and distribute archive material fast. 

The value of near-live sports content is huge, so ensuring that you can distribute your content fast and get it in front of fans in near real-time is crucial. That’s why the leading sports organisations are using media asset management technology to manage every sporting moment and drive stronger engagement from their fans. 

To learn how other sports manage the demands of getting content out fast and accurately on match day, download ‘The Big Game’ report for free 

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