The Olympic Games of 2012 are the first truly social Olympic Games in history. Several digital and social advancements now allow consumers to personally engage with thousands of Olympic athletes. Almost every athlete has a Twitter account or Facebook page to keep the fans up to date. And boy do we keep an eye on them!
BBC said that “This will be the first social games”, and they couldn’t be more right. The Olympic International Committee even set up a ‘Social media blogging and internet guideline‘. See how much has changed when you compare the olympic social metrics of 2008 and 2012 in this infographic.
London Heroes app
To stay up to date on all the buzz in the Olympic village, IN10 and P2 Sports Marketing launched the iPhone app London Heroes. This app lets you follow all Olympic Athletes easily. Even without a Twitter account. You can make a selection by country and/or type of sport. Or create your own list of heroes. This way you’re always up to date and you know if your heroes are all set in their pursuit of an Olympic medal. Also choose from lists carefully composed by experts. Predefined sets of athletes to follow, such as The Gold diggers, The Babes, The Dark Horses, The Beijing Heroes or The Press. We will add more handy and updated lists during the Games.We have never been more connected to athletes as during the 2012 Olympic Games in London. With London Heroes you’re always sitting in the front row.
• Follow all Olympic athletes
• Make your own list of heroes to follow
• Filter by sports
• Filter by country
• Choose special presets, composed by the experts
• Easy to share via Facebook and Twitter
So, who are the most social Olympians? Fanpagelist made an online list which you can choose to see by the highest Klout score, the highest number of followers, most fans, the most talked about and a the sum of this all. On the 1st of August 2012, the top two is (not very surprisingly) as following:
- Usain Bolt
The Jamaican sprinter has 7,107,128 Facebook fans. At the moment of writing this post, 340,639 PTA (amount of people ‘talking about him’ on Facebook) and 714,006 Twitter followers.
- Michael Phelps
The American swimmer with an insane amount of Olympic medals has 5,586,575 Facebook fans,218,444 PTA and 679,548 Twitter followers.
The fact that the games are so social, also brings a downside, for the athletes at least. All eyes are on every move they make, now not only on screen, but on their personal Twitter accounts as well. Voula Papachristou, a Greek triple jumper, has been expelled from the Olympics after she posted a racist joke on Twitter. The Swiss soccer player Michel Morganella has also been kicked out of the Olympics. He was on the losing end of a 2-1 defeat to South Korea at the Olympics on Sunday the 29th of july, and following the loss he had a ‘meltdown’ on Twitter.
The beauty of sport
But, we should not forget what the Olympics Games really are. It’s the biggest sport event in history. It brings people together. Professional athletes train years and years for that medal. The official Muse – Survival movie really captures that.