By: Gina Mason
#WorldCup mania has official begun. With a few days of exciting play behind us, people everywhere are eager to see what the next month of soccer has in store. As I mentioned in my SONY and the World Cup blog a few weeks ago, Twitter is expected to dominate the World Cup conversation and its social media competition. So far, that prediction has been pretty accurate.
During the first game of the World Cup, over 12.2 million tweets were sent out from 150 countries with the hashtag #BrazilvCroatia. In just 90 minutes of play, Brazil’s star forward, Neymar got over 150,000 new Twitter followers. With numbers like that (just in the first day), it is no wonder that Twitter has amped up its interface and is offering fans some exciting new features for the World Cup festivities.
Here are a few special things that Twitter has done to make following the World Cup more exciting:
With the growth of Twitter tapering off, it had to capitalize on this opportunity that only comes around every four years. What better way to attract new users than to tap into the World Cup market and create special profile customizations for users who are only interested in the World Cup? Twitter has made it easier than ever to join and use the social media network and after users sign up, they can customize their profile based on the team that they are supporting. This customization includes a “chose your side” feature where you can proudly display your country’s flag; it connects you with friends and even generates a “support your side” tweet that is entered in the World Cup of Tweets (more info about this feature below).
For those of you who are already Twitter users and want to get into the World Cup profile action, click here to customize your profile.
World Cup Timeline
Twitter is offering a timeline feature were you can simply click on the hashtag #WorldCup2014 or the World Cup sidebar to stay updated on all things World Cup. This World Cup timeline is the epicenter of World Cup chatter and not only showcases all of the games in a “scoreboard” tool bar, but also connects users to the international soccer teams, the players and the fans supporting them. Fans can stay tuned into the conversation by seeing all of the tweets, photos and videos that are posted by people around the world.
Just for the World Cup, Twitter has re-released/unveiled the hashflag feature that was so popular during the 2010 World Cup. Show your support for your favorite team by hashtagging the country’s three-letter code (i.e. #USA #FRA #ITA) and a little flag will appear in your tweet. Not only does this fun little feature add some color to your tweets, Twitter will be tallying up the hashflags from around the world to host its own World Cup of Tweets. So get tweeting and show your support!
See an example of hashflags below:
With all of the great features that Twitter is offering during the World Cup, it will be interesting to see if it will be able to generate more users. Above all else, it is great to see that people from all over the world are coming together via social media and creating a community around this incredible sporting event.
As always, I welcome your comments and if you like what you read be social and share.