Experiencing the Olympics 5 decades ago was significantly different from what it is today. Today we have altered the rules, added a few more categories, sport different jerseys, but the largest difference is the explosion of social media. You don’t need to go back 50 years, to get a sense of how social media has changed the Olympic game’s experience . Imagine it is the year 1996 and you are attending the summer Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia and you aren’t tweeting that your all time favorite swimmer just finished first in the 200 Medley relay. Doesn’t it seem like a piece of the experience is missing?
Going Viral like never before
Techbargains.com gathered estimates for what the social media usage will be during upcoming Summer Olympic Games. They did this by conducting a survey asking people questions like “How often do you plan to interact with social media during the Olympics?”. According to the survey it is estimated that 77% of people will be posting Olympic related content on Facebook , 31% on twitter, and 28% on YouTube. Also according to the survey it is foreseen that 53% of the sharing will be cheering on the athletes and 21% will be about results and medal ceremonies. The media conglomerate, NBC noticed these statistics and seized the opportunity to build upon it.
NBC has made a deal with the Olympics and guess what it? It involves apps. It is called the NBC Olympics App and NBC Olympics “Live Extra” App. which is available on iPhone and iPad. It will stream live the events via the apps and the NBC website. The app has made it possible to watch the Olympics live without delayed events for the first time on mobile devices and the web. NBC capitalized on the idea that the Olympics are all about history unfolding and in turn created an environment for the Olympic story to be a part of everyones life 24/7. NBC has done this by focusing on making every aspect of the Olympics from the athletes to the Olympic gear as interactive and engaging as possible. With polls, mad libs, a box to type in your zip code to find athletes in your hometown, easy to share videos, live tweet stats it is a story being updated every second. Even the sponsors have integrated their brands into the storytelling. For instance, VISA has a display ad (with their logo visible) that connects to a Facebook to create a cheer for an athlete page. This is the first Olympics where the connection and bond between the athletes thousands of miles away from their home town fans is stronger than ever thanks to the technique of storytelling.
NBCOlympics.com visible via Facebook
To make sure the story is spread to its maximum potential a special Facebook sharing option is available. It is called “Social Sharing on NBCOlympics.com”, which allows for everything you read or watch on NBCOlympics.com to automatically be updated to your Facebook timeline. This eliminates the trouble of clicking ‘share’ or ‘like’. Helping the pieces of the story go viral almost almost by default.
Nike indirectly participating in the Games via Twitter
Nike may not be sponsoring the Olympics this year, but that doesn’t mean they won’t get their story told. There strategy involves promoted tweets accompanied by the brand logo and links. This is all apart of Jordan’s #riseabove marketing campaign. During the live games Nike will tweet updates hoping to promote excitement and retweets, ultimately gaining new followers to be a part of their brand story.