Recently social media have been overpowered by football excitement. The biting of Suarez,  the staggering victory of the German team over Brazil and finally brave fight for the Cup were only a few pretexts for brands to use the real-time marketing. Sponsors of the FIFA World Cup paid huge money and tired to use the sponsorship also for social media marketing. However, some of their competitors were referring to the World Cup too, sometimes with big success, as our analysis shows. No matter if you are an official sponsor of a big event or not, you can use it to engage your social media fans.

We analyzed Facebook posts of several FIFA Partners and FIFA World Cup Sponsors, as well as of some of their competitors* (full list of profiles can be seen on the bottom of the page) published between the first match until last Monday morning (12 June – 11 July 2014). We measured engagement using the simplest metrics: sum of likes, shares and comments for each post.

Hot Brazilian model and sponsors’ posts referring to the FIFA World Cup

Among sponsors and partners, only couple of brands, like Visa, focused their communication on the World Cup. Others only sometimes referred to this event. As we said, not every brand, that was a partner of FIFA,  was able to make use of the privileges the sponsorship entails. For example, you can’t say that Kia Motors, FIFA Partner, has made good use of the potential of Facebook “football” marketing. Believe us or not, even hot Brazilian top model, Adriana Lima, did not attract the users’ attention. Here are the top 5 posts of  sponsors and partners of the FIFA World Cup:

FIFA World Cup 2014 on Facebook. Top posts of FIFA partners

FIFA World Cup 2014 on Facebook. Top posts of FIFA partners

Sponsors vs. their competitors – who engaged on Facebook?

We analyzed also Facebook communication of several competitors of the FIFA World Cup sponsors. Despite the fact that they referred to the event more seldom and only 14% of their best posts referred to football,  many of them hijacked the news related to the World Cup faster and in much more humorous and clever way. Below you can see several examples confirming the fact that you don’t have to sponsor big events like the World Cup in order to engage your fans. Which of them you like the most?

*The analysis covered top posts of the time of the World Cup published on Facebook profiles of sponsors and partners: Adidas, Kia Motors America , OrangePolska, Emirates, Sony, Visa, Budweiser, Bud Light, Castrol, Continental, McDonald’s and their competitors: Nike, Puma, Reebok, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota USA, Volkswagen, Lufthansa, KLM, American Airlines, Panasonic, Philips, SamsungTV, American Express, MasterCard, Discover, Skol, Carlsberg, Stella Artois, Total, Havoline, Valvoline, Goodyear, Pirelli,  Michelin USA, KFC, Burger King, Tacobell.