The UEFA Champions League final, Europe’s biggest football tournament took place in Lisbon over the weekend. The all-Spanish final between Real Madrid CF and rising stars Club Atlético de Madrid generated an enormous buzz on social media worldwide. After a thrilling match, heading into extra time, Real Madrid won their 10th European Cup with a 4–1 win over Atlético Madrid.
Adobe Digital Index (ADI) used Adobe Social to monitor 4.5 million mentions of the final match on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Pinterest, VK, Reddit, Disqus, and blogs during May. Here are some of the fascinating revelations:
- 120 of the 196 countries in the world contributed to the social buzz around the match.
- Surprisingly, Indonesian social media users topped the list of countries talking about the Champions League in the social space, accounting for 22% of mentions.
- Spain was second with 11%, the U.K. third with 9%, and then the U.S. and Venezuela with 5%.
- Indonesian social media users also figure prominently in the discussions of the two teams involved–further evidence of the massive popularity of European football in a country where a feud has split the domestic game into rival leagues. More mentions of Atlético came from Indonesia than any other country (35%), followed by the U.K. (16%), Turkey (13%), and the U.S. (7%).
- In contrast, the Spanish are using social media to talk about Real Madrid. Just over 1/3 of the mentions of Real come from Spain, but, once again, Indonesians are also enthusiastic, with 19% of mentions of Real coming from there.
- 43% of buzz about the UEFA Champions League final reflects ‘joy’ or ‘admiration’ for the game, while 25% is related to ‘sadness.
- Among the players on show in the final, Real striker Cristiano Ronaldo figures most prominently in social media, averaging 36,425 mentions a day, compared with Atlético’s Diego Costa’s 20,908 average mentions.
- Fun fact: Ronaldo has the most Twitter followers of any athlete in the world, at more than 26 million. In fact, footballers comprise eight of the top 10 most followed athletes.
Football is truly global, transcending geographical boundaries, races, and cultures. Given the vast reach of football, there is a tremendous opportunity presented by football fans’ activity on social and mobile.
The Champion’s League final and the upcoming World Cup offer marketers around the globe the chance to capitalise on what is shaping up to be a record level of mobile video and social media activity, as fans and foes pick up smartphones to catch up and comment on the teams online. By analyzing social media ‘buzz’ data, marketers can identify new opportunities and quantify the huge worldwide appeal of what some marketers might just consider a regional event. This is a great justification for expanding the use of social and mobile marketing in a business strategy.