Last week, the Los Angeles Kings clinched the NHL Stanley Cup Finals with a Game 5 win over the New York Rangers. The series was marked by extremely close games – three went into overtime – and an intense bicoastal rivalry in which even the teams’ respective social media managers got involved.
360i’s Insights & Planning group analyzed conversations during the five-game series to dive deeper into how the matchup played out off the ice in social media. Below is a summary of their findings and how marketers can apply these insights to their own programs.
Who won the battle of the buzz?
In addition to their victory on the ice, the LA Kings also took home the battle of the buzz. Kings-related chatter accounted for 61 percent of Stanley Cup Finals conversations analyzed, compared to 39 percent of conversations taking place about the New York Rangers. This isn’t too surprising, since the Kings won four games in the series to the Rangers’ one – and eventually took home the coveted Stanley Cup trophy.
‘The King’ was the king of social media
During the series, New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (an athlete who is well-known for his social media savvy) captured the most conversations with nearly 80,000 mentions. Coincidentally, this king of social media is also nicknamed ‘The King’ by the Rangers faithful.
The next five players each came in at under 25,000 mentions a piece and all hailed from the LA Kings roster. This gap in buzz is likely due to Lundqvist’s heroics throughout the series – despite the Rangers dropping four games – and the lack of an offensive standout on the Rangers which kept their individual players out of the next five. On the whole, the LA Kings players were more likely to be mentioned on Twitter than the New York Rangers players.
Just for fun: Which fans curse the most?
True to the stereotype, New York fans accounted for 56 percent of all curse words related to the Stanley Cup Finals versus Los Angeles fans’ 44 percent share – this according to a geotargeted analysis of tweets mentioning the teams and/or series in addition to a selection of key swear words.
For marketers, the hockey rink might seem like a strange place to find inspiration, but brands can learn a lot by monitoring how audiences react and respond to live events (like the Stanley Cup) – and then use those consumer insights to inform their ongoing social media content strategies.
Research was conducted by Lia McCaffery, Analyst, Insights & Planning and Preeti Desai, Manager, Insights & Planning at 360i. Fitz Maro, Associate Strategist at 360i, contributed to this report.
Cover photo via The Guardian