Marketwired Blog

The MLB’s Social Grand Slam

This year, Major League Baseball went the extra mile to try and incorporate social media into their Home Run Derby and All Star Game. MLB encouraged their fans watching to also tweet along by using the hashtags #HRDerby for the home run competition on Monday night and #ASG for the All Star Game on Tuesday. Not only did they encourage fans to tweet along with the action, but also the players. The league set up “social media stations” around the dugouts and other player areas so they could tweet, share photos, and update their Facebook status during the game to interact with fans.

The idea was a huge success. Using MAP, our social media monitoring and analytics software, I looked at all the tweets that they managed to get. Over the two days, and between both hashtags, they managed to stir up 737,083 tweets. The majority of tweets came from males in the United States.

And what were the fans tweeting about? By looking at the word cloud around all the tweets, it seems that people were tweeting what was happening in the game. We can see some batting counts, players names, and even team names. It makes me especially happy to see my home town team, the Blue Jays, seemed to be talked about a lot.

I then dove a little bit deeper into the individual parts of the American Classic. I started with the home run derby on Monday night. Looking for the #HRDerby hashtag I found 358, 038 tweets from that night. That’s a lot of tweets between the 8 players competeing.

It’s not surprising, but interesting none-the-less, to see that the entities pulled from the #HRDerby conversation is almost teh exact same as teh words found in the buzzgraph. This is because the home run competition focuses on a few individual players, so everyone just talks about them. Prince Fielder was talked about the most, as he won the competition with an astounding 28 home runs. The one name I can pull out of the buzzgraph that wasn’t one of the players involved was Chris “Berman” who fans didn’t seem to enjoy as an announcer.

Then I looked at the #ASG hashtag. Over the two days, this hashtag garnered 382,732 tweets.

Over just Tuesday, the day of the actual game, I found the majority of tweets using this hashtag. Tuesday alone produced 324,273 tweets.

I then looked at who and what the fans were tweeting about for this event. In terms of entities, I found that the National League was talked about the most as they trounced the American League with a whopping 8-0 win. I also found that Kansas City was being talked about a lot as that’s where the game was held this year. In terms of players, the two that mostly stood out in conversation were Josh Hamilton, who’s one of the hottest players right now but did nothing in the game, and Derek Jeter. The buzzgraph showed some of the same names plus a few other players, as well as the score and that they were watching the game on Fox.

Overall, it seems that the MLB hit it out of the park with their social initiative (pun intended). By getting the players involved in all the chat, social media gave the fans a real way of feeling involved and getting the inside scoop from those actually involved. This definitely helped with getting a huge Twitter reaction for the Summer Classic.

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