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Social media at the World Cup

Winning World Cup Glory Through Social Media4 min read

4 min read

Even if you are not an avid footie fan, if you’re a member of a social network such as Facebook or Twitter, then there is no doubt your news feed has been providing you with a running commentary of the all the latest news from Brazil.

The power of social has become increasingly obvious during this year’s World Cup. In an ever increasingly interactive digital world, this event hasn’t failed in becoming the most socially talked about ever.

Our SEO team took a look at the impact that social media has had at the World Cup.


During the first day of the tournament, 58 million Facebook users were responsible for over 140 million interactions about the World Cup. At the end of the group stages, with 2 weeks still to go, Facebook confirmed there to have been over 1 billion social interactions relating to the World Cup – the most ever recorded for one single event.


To give you an idea of the scale on which the World Cup is being discussed we have taken a look at the tweets sent during England’s first two games. During the Uruguay match, 6.7 million tweets were sent relating to the game and a further 7.2 million during the Italy fixture

Let’s say it takes 30 seconds to write a tweet and during these two games 13.9 million tweets were sent. That’s 417,000,000 minutes equating to 289,583 days or 792 years! All of which happened in the space of just 180 minutes. This shows just how many millions of people have been connecting socially about magic of the World Cup.

FIFA keep fans up to date with match highlights via Twitter and Facebook whilst their website shows live statistics of social activity. Current numbers for the tournament stands at: 492 tweets per minute 27,008 mentions per hour 42,449,464 total mentions.

Social media at the World Cup

Brands and Players

 Social media has not only been benefitting keen fans who can’t catch a match and want to know the latest score but has also been extremely lucrative for brands and players themselves.


Official World Cup sponsor Adidas have been taking full advantage of social media during the World Cup as they aim to interact with their target audience, during an event where up to 80% of viewers will engage with social media.

  • The official TV sponsorship campaign featuring Messi, Surez and Van Persie aims to direct consumers to social media platforms. The ad went viral on YouTube gathering 15 million views.
  • Even the tournament ball produced by the German brand, @brazuca has it’s own Twitter following with more than 2.66m tuning into it’s thoughts.
  • Although the brand has got a lot of stick over the Luis Surez biting scandal it still set to benefit the brand as images mimicking the event spread virally and thanks to social media so did the brands logo. 107,152 tweets per minute were posted relating to this incident and the player even took to Twitter to publicly apologise for his actions once again putting the brand in the social spotlight with his 3.27m followers.


Nike are unsurprisingly in a head on battle with Adidas to achieve the best social media coverage from the tournament. They succeeded with attracting a huge online viewing of their #RiskEverything advert featuring Ronaldo, Rooney and Hulk. When Ronaldo tweeted the ad, over 70million views occurred in days thanks to the world’s most popular sportsman on Twitter.

Players and Teams

 Players and teams are lapping up the social explosion. As their names trend and they gain larger social followings from fans wanting to hear what they have to say about the tournament. Twitter have allowed users to personalise their accounts to fit their World Cup team, after choosing your team you can automatically follow a huge number of related accounts. This is great news for those associated who now have the chance to engage and influence an even larger number of people.

Why is this so great?

For brands: they can save a lot of money on expensive ad campaigns and invest more time in engaging with their audience. As a result there is a lot more user generated content which is free to the brand and can promote them just as well as traditional marketing techniques.

For players: Being able to interact with their fans is a great thing for anyone in the spotlight as we always like to feel like were not a million worlds apart. The outcome for players is not only a larger fan following but the knock on affects this can have, such as offers of sponsorships.