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Social Media & The Olympics. | Man Over Machine - Digital Marketing Strategy

If you watched the 2012 Olympics, there’s a pretty good chance you watched either Swimming or Gymnastics. Why? Because that’s about all NBC decided to show. NBC faced an enormous uproar from viewers complaining about some sports getting too much coverage while other sports got hardly any airtime. As well, many viewers were disappointed to watch the competition hours after the winner had been decided.

What’s worse is a few times Bob Costas announced who won the event before you ever saw it. Spoilers that kill the excitement of watching. “Now we’ll watch the men’s high bar where Denmark’s Epke Zonderland wins the gold medal…Enjoy.” Would you want to know who won a football game before it was aired? No.

I’m no Media Critic, but I do understand that the world of broadcasting is shifting due to social media. With twitter feeds and Facebook updates painting a picture of what’s happening long before it ever was aired on TV, it’s tough to really get excited about the sports.

So how can the coverage for Rio change? Well, for starters, it’s close to the same time zone as the US. Being only 1 hour off from most of the US. Hopefully this will fix a large majority of those issues. But, say it wasn’t. Let’s think about some things they could have done.

For starters, accepting social media participation and capitalizing on it. As events happen, stream them live online. Host them so people can then watch them later. Run ads during the event, have commercials just like any regular broadcast. User remarketing, use contextual marketing, use all the tools that online marketing has to offer to increase the power of the ads. Then, when people share a score “Phelps brings home gold” they can include a link to the video. That video can then be shared virally over the internet and NBC is there to capitalize on the ad dollars.

This solution, obviously, opposes their media blackout until prime time philosophy which worked so well. #NBCFAIL