Jan 17 What to Expect on Social Media During Super Bowl LI
The Super Bowl is … “the Super Bowl” of social media for brands. During the day of the big game, brands receive up to 6x more mentions on Twitter. Usually this is due to purchasing TV ad space, but social conversation in general spikes on this day thanks to over 60 million participating users contributing around 200 million posts, comments, likes and tweets. How can your brand participate in these social conversations? Based on past Super Bowl social trends, check out these potential opportunities for your brand.
1) Trending Hashtag Overload
Let’s start with the easiest; social media managers should ensure their Super Bowl weekend strategy
involves monitoring trending hashtags for real-time opportunities. You never know when something will start trending that your brand could contribute to. During Super Bowl 50, when Always’ hashtag #LikeAGirl was trending, brands took the opportunity to post examples of females working in their industry.
— JetBlue Airways (@JetBlue) February 2, 2015
Over the last two Super Bowls, around 50% of the featured ads included hashtags to encourage second screen engagement from viewers; expect this Super Bowl to be no different. Since a reported 78% of consumers use social media during the Super Bowl, and 38% of those users hop on to chat about the commercials, you can bet brands will be all over those trending topics in 2017.
*Brand watch out; make sure you aren’t using trademarked hashtags, especially those owned by the NFL. Remember, you can’t even use “Super Bowl” unless you are an official sponsor!
2) “We’re Not Playing” Marketing Plans
This has come to life in a few different ways over the past several years. There are the anti-Super Bowl
Super Bowl ads (remember Newcastle’s “If We’d Made It” spot?), where brands advertise by saying they are boycotting or somehow not participating in the Super Bowl the way their competitors are. This finds its way to social media, where those brands who don’t have traditional ads during the big game rely on social contests, active posting, and real time marketing instead. If your brand has the right audience, this can be a good tactic for participating in Super Bowl conversations without coughing up $5 million for a 30 second spot.
Another facet of this trend are the anti-sports crowd. While the Super Bowl is arguably the biggest sporting event every year, many people come to Twitter and other social sites to vent about how they don’t like sports and think the Super Bowl is over-hyped. Social media managers could consider content that commiserates with these vocal opponents as a way to stand out from the crowd.
3) Branded Banter
This is one of my favorite trends on social media during the Super Bowl. Many brands will interact with other brands in real time, either slightly poking fun at the others’ content or by having interactions that are mutually beneficial. Doritos is a great example of a brand who actively does this during the Super Bowl.
— Doritos (@Doritos) February 2, 2015
— Doritos (@Doritos) February 7, 2016
— Pokémon (@Pokemon) February 8, 2016
While your brand may or may not be sponsoring a TV ad, it’s likely that a complementary or competitive
brand is. Consider developing content that tags relevant brands and see if any fellow social media managers take the bait and respond back. While it’s best to pre-arrange these kinds of interactions, real-time can be successful as well.
This is just a small sampling of social trends during the Super Bowl, and this year will likely bring even more.
Need help planning your major social activations? Let us know.