SME Social Series #1 The Growth of Social

This summer two of the biggest sporting events in the world will take place, namely the UEFA European Championship Finals and the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Billions will be spent on sponsorship and advertising meaning only the largest global corporations will be directly associated with these events and the official media broadcasts.

However, this doesn’t mean that Irish SME’s are excluded from getting involved. Regardless of whether your business is relevant to the sporting occasions you can still participate in the countless social media conversations that will take place throughout the summer.

While we make reference to the Euro’s and Rio2016 you can apply these principles to any type of event.

With that in mind, we’ve created the SME Social Series to help them do exactly that. The best way to make sure you don’t miss any of the posts is to subscribe to the OPEN Newsletter.

That was then – The Growth of Social

Four years ago the London 2012 Olympics were dubbed the ‘Socialympics’ as the games shattered previously held records for engagement on social media. However, in social media years 2012 may as well have been last century. The growth of social since then has been phenomenal.

This years Rio Games and the UEFA European Championships Finals in France will blitz the stats of four years ago and prove to be a powerful connector of sports fans and savvy brands.

The Numbers Game

Social media has over 2 billion active users globally with Facebook the clear leader. It has jumped from over 800 million active monthly users in 2012 to 1.5 billion. Instagram and Google+ have grown their user numbers by multiples but still only have about 1/5th of the active monthly users compared to Facebook.
In addition to user numbers increasing the activity of users has jumped as well. Though Twitter has not grown its user base as broadly as other social channels, it’s fast paced feed and up to the second news reporting has seen activity on the channel almost quadruple from 2012 levels.

Barack Obama’s set records at the 2012 Democratic Convention with Twitter clocking 52,000 tweets per minute relating to his #DNC speech. This pales in comparison to the average level of over 400,000 tweets per minute today.

Raising the Bar

While all measures are up since 2012, there will be a spike in user engagement once the Euro’s and the Olympics roll around, especially during the months of competition. There will be particular accounts and hashtags that will be the focus of engagement.

The increased activity won’t be limited to social media. Four years ago the volume for the search queries ‘euro 2012’ and ‘london 2012’ were 3,000% higher than general sports stories.

This summer people, company and brands will be using social media to promote their content, products and services. Can you afford not to take part?


The growth of social has been phenomenal. Social media user numbers and activity have grown massively in the last four years
Sporting events bring social users out in their masses, why not take part?
You can create engagement with potential customers through your content and social media conversations
Posts 2,3 and 4 will outline more about what you need to do.
Are you active on social media? Drop us a tweet using #OPENsocial to @Open_feed

In reality there are events and news stories every week that create conversations you can join. You don’t have to wait for the major sporting events. If you want to learn more about how social media can play a role in your marketing mix contact OPEN today.

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