The Human Side of Digital

The World Gets Social about Soccer

Posted on 21 Jul 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments Twitter icon Facebook icon

By Angelique Oliver

It may just have been a few days but it feels like eons ago that the world converged on Brazil and for 31 days sang songs of cheer, shouted at “unfair” refs, and in some cases shed tears as they supported their favourite soccer teams (and if they happened to get knocked out early like in the case of Spain) moved on to their defaults.

Brazil 2014 Soccer World Cup was absolutely gruelling and without question the most unpredictable World Cup in ages, it had set so many records, of which we would like to focus on the impact it had on social media.

In a survey done by CrowdTap in which they asked 850 men and women a series of questions regarding their predicted interaction and engagement on social media during the World Cup, results showed that 74.2% of the interviewed participants planned on logging onto social media channels during the game. 43.4% of people who logged on said they planned on making use of Facebook and 34.1% said they would be tweeting during the event. Interestingly, of those who said they would share advertising content, 53.7% said they would do so to share interesting adverts. This in turn tells us that there is in fact a good possibility to create viral content as long as it is appealing to the viewer. Another interesting fact related to this is that 52.1% of participants, who said they would share advertising content, also said they would follow the brand post the World Cup.

So that’s the prediction CrowdTap had regarding the World Cup social media stats, but what’s even more interesting is the actual outcome of the world’s participation online. The 2014 Soccer World Cup set a new record in achieving the most interaction ever gauged on social media, and the numbers truly do speak for themselves. The final match between Argentina and Germany managed to gain 280 million interactions from 88 million people, surpassing that of the Superbowl by over 35 million interactions. In order to convey exactly how much activity happened in the 120 minute final game, Twitter created an infographic showing exactly how many Geotagged tweets mentioning key terms around the World Cup game.

Not only did Twitter and Facebook show a substantial amount of interaction, Instagram grew from 42 thousand followers to 1 million in the 31 days, that’s over 100% increase in a month.

The FIFA app was the biggest ever and was downloaded over 28 million times and reached over 451 million Facebook users.

With so many people making use of the internet from mobile devices, accessing the internet has never been easier. This most certainly contributes to one of the key factors as to how so many people actually participated in social media conversations over this World Cup.

One of our favourite parts of logging onto the various social media channels during the game was to actually see the number of memes literally popping up in real time pertaining to the game. These are a few of our favourites.


The word most recently added to the Oxford dictionary due to its popularity amongst mobile phone user, it’s not surprising that a number of “selfies” made their appearance at this year’s World Cup. The most popular of which was one of Rihanna flashing her German bra to cameras at the Germany and Argentina final.

The beauty of Google’s Doodle is the fact that it is literally the first thing you find when starting a search.  The Brazil World Cup Doodles (of which at least one unique one was uploaded daily) not only encapsulated the essence and spirit of the World Cup but managed to surpass even Google’s insane standards and goals. In addition to enjoying a short animation or game one could conveniently click through to a table which displayed the latest scores and points as well as a schedule to upcoming games. For a full breakdown of the doodles and their various meaning have a look at this website.


The internet feels like a different place since the World Cup came to an end… There’s so much less colour and enthusiasm…. What do you think will be the next big thing to happen to social media?

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