RIYADH: With football fever underway in the MENA region and around the world ahead of this year’s FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, Twitter hosted an event at Al-Nassr’s Mrsool Park in the Saudi Arabian capital to take marketers through the importance and influence of football conversations.
With 53 million football-related Tweets recorded so far this year, the event, titled #WhereFootballLives, encouraged brands to take advantage of trending topics related to the sport’s premier event that is watched by millions of fans globally. The discussion focused on ways brands can connect with the cultural moments that drive excitement, ensuring they can join the action, as it happens.
Twitter partnered with specialist survey company, GWI, to conduct research on the overall sentiment in relation to the World Cup, talking to over 12,000 people across 12 markets including MENA. Over 261 million people on Twitter follow at least one major football content contributor or speaker reflecting the potential value of brands engaging with audiences who follow football. The study found that cultural relevance drives 23 percent of a consumer’s purchase decision, while 78 percent of World Cup fans on the platform say they can find content on Twitter that isn’t available on any other platform, meaning brands that connect with football and the World Cup on Twitter access a receptive audience.
Antoine Caironi, head of revenue for Twitter MENA, said: “Football is clearly what’s happening, and it’s happening now on Twitter. The football conversation is bigger than ever before. Up until March this year, we’ve witnessed a 74 percent spike in average monthly football conversations in comparison to the previous 12 months. For brands to stay ahead of the curve and ensure their marketing calendars capitalize on this regional opportunity to play a central role in the FIFA World Cup 2022 conversations, they need to start planning early, and to be ambitious!”
Twitter encourages brands to make use of its offering, such as Amplify Sponsorship, as 72 percent of people on Twitter find sporting highlights appealing. Brands have the opportunity to place Pre-Roll Video in front of more than 200 premium content partners, as well as owning the conversation with Takeover Ads throughout the year.
“Twitter is where highlights appear first. This isn’t just during the live event but months ahead during the build up to the first match, as well as the days and weeks after the tournament ends,” Caironi added.
“So the potential to attract the interest of football fans is exponential. Moreover, we see a powerful intersection with other interests and behaviors as well. In particular, we’ve found football fans on Twitter are 78 to 82 percent more likely to engage with brands and other conversations such as tourism, wearable tech, auto, footwear and smartphones.”