Q&A: Social Media and the NCAA Tournament

Best-March-Madness-Apps-to-Help-You-Follow-Your-BracketsTMA EVP, Strategy & Innovation Tom Edwards talked about the big players for social media and brands during NCAA March Madness.

Q: What role could Snapchat and other social media platforms play in March Madness marketing?
TE: “Snapchat is actively looking to connect and extend physical experiences digitally. With their our story product, they are looking to provide brands with an opportunity to authentically connect their brand with content being created by event goers.

In addition to Snapchat, platforms such and Twitter and Instagram will see heavy usage for brands trying to capitalize on real-time opportunities as well as visual storytelling. Facebook will see usage, especially their video products to further extend the reach of television and create incremental value for their brand partners.”

Q: What makes social a good fit with this tournament?
TE: “The enthusiasm that individuals share for their participating schools, combined with the water cooler nature of brackets creates a lot of conversation, especially as the tournament draws to completion. Social is a great enabler of word of mouth, that combined with the passion for sports makes the platform ideal for large sporting events.”

Q: What brands are likely to be big players in social in March Madness?
TE: “A number of brands will try to create real-time moments associated with the tournament. Brands such as AT&T, Capital One and Coca-Cola will play a big part in March Madness once again. What will be interesting is to see the creativity of brands that are not official sponsors and how they align with the events that transpire on the court and how they try to relate it in some way to their brands social persona. We have seen a sharp rise in brand-to-brand conversation around marquee events over the past year. I am assuming we will see more of the same when the tournament starts.”

Q: What sorts of campaigns could we see these brands launch during the tournament? What campaigns have worked well in the past?
TE: “With an event such as March Madness you will see everything from on-site activations to digital sweeps. Brands that can create an authentic connection with the fan and provide fun and engaging creative that moves the viewer from consumption to creation behaviors will have a leg up.”

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