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Portuguese clubs using Social: Engagement & Propaganda - - Football Social Media & Digital Sports news

Portuguese clubs using Social: Engagement & Propaganda

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4 Responses

  1. Sean Walsh says:

    It’s a fascinating article – particularly looking at how the clubs have used Social Media as a way of “digital propaganda” and criticising referee’s and their competitors!

    I’m sure that the footballing body in Portugal won’t allow this – especially when you consider UEFA’s RESPECT campaign to referee’s.

    An interesting development for the way Social Media is used.

  2. Ivo Loureiro says:

    Sean, thanks for your nice comment and personal opinion on the subject. In fact, for us portuguese, this type of public attack between clubs and of clubs to referees is frequent and almost considered “normal”. With this situation, I was actually aiming to launch a debate or at get some opinions about the last question of the text:
    — “Should success in football clubs social media be measured only in terms of figures and engagement rates? How should social media strategies success be evaluated for football clubs?”–

    In my personal opinion, it’s not enough to talk about engagement rates while evaluating any social media strategy. And my arguments are presented in two ways: (1), I question the definition of engagement rate as widely accepted; and (2), I focus on the content of posting and social media strateg – one thing is when something good for your reputation goes viral, another one is when something bad that hurts your business’ reputation is seen and discussed by virtually everyone.

    –> (1) Figures are important, but should not be interpreted as success or failure indicators per se. Not in the football industry, nor in any other. Engagement rates (ER) – as traditionaly defined by the ratio between the sum of likes, shares and comments on a post and the total number of pagefans on that post’s day – turve one of he main goals and benefits of social media: to listen to the market, to know what the market demands.

    Traditional ER=(Likes+Comments+Shares) / # of pagefans

    By weightening Likes, Comments and Shares equally, this formula mixes too much different actions taken by online audiences. One thing is to Like a post: an easy-to-click, rather sympathetic button than you can press 60 times per minute if you’ve practiced enough. Another one is to Comment on a post: you only comment on something if you are comfortable enough to give your opinion and expect someone will actually listen (or read). And Sharing something is a third form of interacting with a brand’s page content that generaly transmits confidence and true identification with the brand (or, in the case of football, with the club). So it’s clear I defend different weights when evaluating Likes, Comments and Shares on a post. I’m aware that, by doing so, we’ll introduce some subjectivity to the analysis, so I recommend thinking the following way:

    Most agree that, generally, the value of a Share is bigger than a Like. The question is: how much bigger? How many likes would you be willing to give away in order to have one extra share? 5 likes? 3? 10?
    A comment, by the discussion it may generate and for providing the page owner with the possibility to learn more about its audience, seems also to be more valuable than a simple like. Now again, how much bigger? 3 times, 4? Maybe 5?
    And between a comment and a share, what seems more important? Well, again it’s very subjective, but I’d say most of the times a share is at least as important as comment, unless the comment is extraordinarily brilliant and opens the so-desired discussion.

    It’s virtually impossible to find a consensual rule to weighten these different user interactions with a post. However, it’s clear that a post success (and a social media strategy in general) should not be simply evaluated by “traditional engagement rates” as we’ve heard about. According to the market in analysis and its specificities, one should be able to come up with ponderated weights to user interactions that would redefine the formula for Engagement Rate .

    (2) The quality of posts should be evaluated taking into consideration the potential effects it will have not only on the brand’s (or the club’s) image, but also on the market in which it operates (or leagues in which it competes). It’s pretty obvious, from the examples above, that FCPorto and Benfica chose a bad way to promote their own product. OK, one can agree it is definitely entertaining for the masses to assist to public accusations and injuries. The “Big Brother Generations” surely appreciate and consume controversy. However, what will the portuguese league look like in the eyes of football fans from abroad after seeing those videos of violence and controverse refereeing decisions? Are they more likely to consume portuguese football or to simply disconsider it? Again, the answer is simple.

    Much of my personal disappointment comes as a portuguese football fan who is, like many other, devoting an increasing number of enternainment hours to leagues that promote the Beautiful Game for which we fell in love when we were kids. And in what comes to the Beautiful Game, inspite of surely missing Messi, Ronaldo or Mourinho, the Premier League is and will surely be for wordlwide football fans what NBA has been for ages for worlwide basketball fans: simply unique.

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