At the very beginning of the knockout round, Facebook announced that for the first time in the history of the social network an event had passed the one billion mark in site interactions. The World Cup had attracted the attention of more than 220 million Facebookers who have Liked, posted, or commented on the planet’s largest soccer tournament. Indeed it is estimated that up to 80 percent of all World Cup viewers used some form of social media during the games themselves. The World Cup seems to have become the first Social Media World Cup, and smart online brand marketers have risen to the challenge in order to really pull in the Gold!

Almost half of World Cup social media fans are in Asia

Adobe’s Digital Index is a broadcast and social media ratings tool which was developed by the giant software corporation in conjunction with GSP, and it discovered that mentions of the World Cup were being issued from every country and territory on Earth. Out of the worldwide conversation it seems that the Asia Pacific region was the most interested (from a total numbers standpoint) with 48% share, Europe, the Middle East and Africa close behind with 32% and North and South America combined were just 20%. Significantly, the biggest country for World Cup mentions was Brazil with 9% of the total which actually beat the USA with 8%.

FIFA mastered long Social Webpage dwell times

For this year’s World Cup, FIFA has set up a Social Webpage where you can see at a glance which players are trending at any given time, along with the volume of social posts and tweets about them, creating a type of star meter where any given player can be ranked versus their colleagues or competitors. FIFA’s World Cup Social Webpage doesn’t stop there, with a fully interactive map of global social mentions for players as well as teams and nations. FIFA has even integrated a widget which allows fans to join in the social conversation and create posts and make comments without ever leaving the Social Webpage. FIFA is obviously well aware of the value of long dwell times on a particular page and has leveraged their facilitations on the World Cup Social Webpage to maximum effect.

Adidas racked up 20 million retweets!

The worldwide appeal of the World Cup has been leveraged to virtual perfection by major brands. Nike, for example, attracted nearly 400 million online views for just two of its online advertisements. When Nike announced that it would provide Brazilian team member Neymar with a set of golden soccer boots, that post was shared or liked nearly 1.5 million times. Competitor Adidas’ tweets discussing the hotly contested goal France scored against Honduras and another featuring popular singer Pharrell Williams managed to rack up a staggering 20 million retweets!

100,000 Likes to keep Katsouranis off the pitch

Not all of the huge World Cup social media statistical figures are generated by corporations. Katsouranis was one of the great heroes of the Greek team which triumphed in the Euro 2004 tourney but Greece fans on social media turned against him to such a vicious extent that almost 100,000 of them Liked a Facebook page which called for him to not take the field against Costa Rica. It didn’t help his cause that when he was playing against Japan in what turned out to be a scoreless draw, his famous hot temper forced the referees to red card him. Situations such as this show vividly that World Cup social media is not always a puppet show put on by the corporations who are pulling the strings, but is highly subject to a groundswell of public opinion which finds its own ways of expressing a viewpoint on the grand event.

Ronaldo the highest paid soccer player on the planet is the top social media superstar of the World Cup with an absolutely jaw-dropping 118 million followers over his networking presences. If you needed any additional evidence that soccer is a world social media power that your brand should be affiliated with, that number should definitely suffice to convince you!