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Published July 28th 2014

Sponsors, Swimmers & Selfies: The Social Side of the Commonwealth Games

Using the Brandwach Analytics tool we've taken another dip into the sea of data surrounding the 2014 Commonwealth Games...

Using the Brandwatch Analytics tool we’ve taken another dip into the sea of data surrounding the 2014 Commonwealth Games. 

The Social Leaderboard

SSE (Scottish and Southern Energy) have used social media to make the most out of their Commonwealth sponsorship.

The opening ceremony showed how most of the sponsors did very little to raise brand awareness. 

SSE, however, have learnt from this mistake and improved their social media presence by creating GoGlasgow, where Twitter users tweet support for the country they back. These tweets are added to a virtual real time leaderboard to show the greatest social support behind each nation.

SSE Leaderboard

The benefit of this simple yet effective design is that it creates public interest around a brand and an industry that is traditionally uninteresting.


Click the graph to see interactive version.

This graph shows how since the #GoGlasgow Leaderboard, SSE have outperformed other well known brands sponsoring the event; Virgin Media, Ford and BP.

Considering Virgin Media have the world’s most marketable athlete, Usain Bolt, as part of their branding, SSE’s dominance on social media has shown the effectiveness of a unique online content campaign that fans can relate to.

How Erriad Davies Won Our Hearts

A 13 year old schoolgirl from the Shetland Islands who trains in a tiny 16.5 meter pool becomes the youngest ever Scottish Commonwealth Athlete and wins bronze at in front of a home crowd – how’s that for a headline?

Unsurprisingly, Erriad Davies remarkable bronze in the 100m-breaststroke final caused an outpour of Twitter love. With her name topping the trending charts, we’ve analyzed the sentiment behind those mentions.


Click the graph to see interactive version.

Erriad actually gained a higher percentage of positive mentions then any of the other major Commonwealth athletes during the games, showing that a fairytale story of winning against the odds can have a greater resonance with fans then some of the world’s most popular sports men or women.

Hockey’s Reign at the Top

Hockey is the 9th most popular sport in the UK – yet on July 24th it raised more mentions then any other sport during the first 6 days of the event.


Click the graph to see interactive version.

Swimming came second with almost half as many mentions, whilst athletics recorded a surprising third.

So, why did the game with two gold medals available resonate such interest with the general public?

The answer – a photobomb to rule them all from a smiling (yes, smiling) Queen Elizabeth.

Queen Selfie

The selfie taken by Australian Hockey players Jade Taylor and Anna Flanagan caused a spike in mentions for the sport, causing it to rise above swimming and athletics in online mentions.

With social media selfies dominating the news as much as the sport itself these days, it’s time we conceded that these games – like the World Cup and Olympics – are becoming not just sporting events, but social events too.

All data used for this blog was gathered and analyzed by Brandwatch. Want to see what insights you can pull about your brand?

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