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Why your brand can't afford to miss out on the real-time action at the World Cup – by Twitter's Dara Nasr


By Dara Nasr | sales director, UK

June 5, 2014 | 9 min read

Twitter and live events go hand in hand – and they don’t come much bigger than the World Cup. Twitter UK’s sales director, Dara Nasr, says brands cannot afford to miss out on the real-time conversation this summer.Football is a national passion, and with a week to go until the opening ceremony, conversation about this summer’s World Cup is already buzzing.We know Twitter users love to watch football and talk about it online – last year eight out of ten of the most tweeted-about moments were sport-related. The 2013 Confederations Cup (a tournament that precedes the World Cup in the host country every four years) generated more than 36 million tweets – and the recent Champions League final generated more than 8.4 million tweets. Live domestic football is enjoying record audiences on TV, so this summer’s World Cup has all the hallmarks of being a tournament to remember. And with 90 per cent of online public conversation around TV happening on Twitter, it’s the natural second screen for televised sporting events.What’s more, recent research from Global Web Index found that 87 per cent of UK Twitter users will be watching World Cup games live on live TV. This will give brands the chance to not only take advantage of big live moments, but to join the conversation and connect their outdoor, print and TV media through Twitter.ChallengesOf course, the World Cup represents a great opportunity, but it also represents a challenge. There are, for instance, logistics to be considered, and what needs to be in place to take advantage of live moments; the question of speed and the need to act quickly; and, yes, the pressure to be funny.The good news is that brands needn’t be overwhelmed. Much can be planned in advance. That’s something we’ve been working closely with brands on through our Twitter Live Studio sessions, which are designed to help brands with the structure and techniques needed for planning for the moment.Everyday, Campaign and Live momentsWhile brands often think they need to focus on unpredictable moments playing out to win in real-time marketing, in fact we think that a more successful approach is to focus on moments that matter to your brand. For ease, we split these moments into three groups: Everyday moments, Campaign moments and Live moments.  photo 5ecb0b19-277e-4614-bd56-ee38b2df2a03_zps031c083a.pngEveryday moments represent conversations taking place on the platform all the time. It can be that morning cup of coffee on the way to the office, the post work trip to the gym, or visit to the supermarket. And as simple as a tweet with a picture suggesting something different for dinner. These are moments when brands can easily engage, everyday, all the time.Campaign moments provide an opportunity for brands to use Twitter at the heart of their wider marketing activity. We’ve seen compelling examples of what happens when brands connect TV ads with Twitter. Advertisers running both TV ads and promoted tweets have seen 95 per cent stronger message association and 58 per cent higher purchase intent, versus TV alone – showing how brands can achieve great results by using Twitter to extend their campaign messages from other media.Live moments are those live events – most of which we know will happen (such as the World Cup opening ceremony and group games), we well as unexpected moments that could be pertinent to your business – such as political announcement or celebrity news. Live moments can provide a great opportunity for creativity and humour, but also for reiteration of your established brand messages at a relevant moment. Plan for the momentOne of the things we saw through the Twitter Live Studio was how quickly brands “got it” when they realised that many live predictable moments can be planned for in advance and executed in real-time.For instance, write your brand a simple list for the World Cup. Put on it the team’s departure for Brazil, the announcement of the England starting 11, and England’s first group stage match against Italy. Three moments right there that brands can plan for, which show how clients that want to align themselves to these events, can easily do so with Twitter. We have already seen great examples of this over the last year and I’m sure that this World Cup will drive superb innovative and creativity on the platform.

Living in the moment: Brands and the World Cup

@VauxhallEnglandWe have already seen one of the first big England moments on the platform when the @FA announced the England team exclusively on Twitter through its new @England account.That moment was leveraged by team sponsor @VauxhallEngland. It prepared well in advance and planned its own version of the announcement in a simple and highly effective way.The brand laid the ground for that by launching a competition to win an England shirt. The competition attracted high levels of engagement and thousands of retweets as did @VauxhallEngland’s announcement of the @England line-up. Vauxhall pushed out a live stream for users to watch the squad being announced:The brand followed events throughout the day using hashtag #ComeOnEngland, which is supported with a Promoted Trend to drive conversation.This approach highlights how a brand can easily take advantage of Live moments and forward plan to capture the moment.@adidasfootballThis month @adidasfootball surpassed 1m Twitter followers (1.18m+) and launched a global trend for the Champion’s League final, which marked the launch of its World Cup campaign.Two minutes before the #UCLFinal started there were seven Champions League-related trends running in the UK on Twitter. Adidas dominated the top trending term on Twitter across 50 markets with its message #allin or nothing.@adidasfootball used the occasion of the #UCLFinal to give a taste of what fans can expect from the brand during Brazil 2014. On the day itself, it launched its TV ad starring Lionel Messi and other stars on Twitter as a branded buses took to the streets of London. At half-time, Adidas used Twitter to promote its TV ad as it aired live in the commercial break. Adidas also leveraged its brand ambassadors (Suarez, Ozil, Bale) who showed their support for the ad. Throughout the day, the brand combined planned and real-time content from a live studio newsroom where it had a focus on making great use of key assets such as giving away star players Diego Costa and Angel Di Maria’s signed boots live on Twitter.Thinking of running some real-time marketing around the World Cup? Read our Hints for brands preparing for World Cup fever on Facebook and Twitter first.
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