The top sports publishers on social media


By   |   October 10th, 2018   |   Reading time: 2 minutes Brands, Digital Journalism

Social Media Report, Facebook Analytics

In our latest sports content analysis, we look at the top sports publishers and teams that have their fans hyped up on social media.

Conservative estimates suggest that upward of 50 percent of the adult U.S. population consider themselves to be a fan of at least one sport, with 57 percent watching professional football alone.

In our Sports Publishers report, we look at some of the high-level trends around sports reporting, as well as giving a sneak peek at the Snaps that people are producing at live sporting events.

In the report we cover:

  • The successful web content from sports publishers
  • What type of content was successful on Facebook, both in terms of format and content
  • The teams that are just as viral as publishers
  • How fans are using Snapchat around sporting events

Here are a few quick things to know from our findings.

 

On Facebook, photo steals the wins

 

Typically, when we analyze Facebook content, native video content is the top performing format.

That wasn’t the case for sports content on Facebook, especially for the likes of Bleacher Report Football and Give Me Sport. Both Facebook Pages saw their top content come from photo posts.

Give Me Sport Facebook

Not all content is created equal, and this goes to show that it is worth experimenting, as different content resonates with different audiences.

 

What drives shares vs. comments

 

There is often a difference between what content drives shares and what drives comments. Facebook announced in January 2018 that it would be promoting content from friends and family, with comment-worthy content making up a big part of that.

In a confirmation of this change, our most-commented sports publisher, Sport Bible, was also the most engaged publisher overall.

Sport Bible comments Facebook publishers

This recent article drove ~14k comments for the publisher on Facebook, approximately a third of the article’s total Facebook engagements.

 

In terms of the most-shared publishers, it resembled our overall rankings even less. This goes to emphasize that what drives discussion is not always the same as what makes content ‘shareable’.

 

A world of untapped user-generated content

 

User-generated content is a more organic way of exciting your audience, as you can highlight your community and super-fans. Sports publishers and teams are already in a great place to incorporate UGC into their strategy.

Snapchat is one such source of this content. As opposed to the careful curation that might happen on another platform, or quick tweets in 280 characters or less, Snapchat provides a visual and open lens on the world of sports.

This content is a great opportunity to add to the sense of community that following a sports team can bring, and this really builds into that theme. NewsWhip Spike users can use the Snapchat Geo Search to surface relevant snaps by location or caption, making it easy to find what users are posting.

For more insights, check out the report here

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