The first semi final is over, New Zealand has confirmed its spot for the final game of ICC World Cup 2015. Log on to Twitter and you will find that at least four trends are dominated by the cricket match. This has been the case ever since the early group matches. Twitter’s communication was very clear – let the live match be on TV but all conversations pre and post match will take place on its 140-character social network.
Twitter’s World Cup TVC released with the start of the games was the natural extension to its communication – “All of the excitement. All of the World Cup. Only on Twitter”
— Twitter India (@TwitterIndia) February 26, 2015
So far Twitter has been pretty successful. Whether checking the latest scores, tweeting about their teams’ wins or lamenting a loss, cricket fans have flocked to Twitter to keep up with the #CWC15, with more than 800 million total views of tweets during group stage games. According to Twitter the league match between arch rivals clash generated the most Tweet impressions of any match. There were 118.3 Million live Tweet impressions for #INDvPAK during the #CWC15 match window affirming that Twitter has become the de facto #SecondScreen for TV viewers in India.
Overall, there were 1.7 Million Tweets related to the match. Virat Kohli reaching his hundred in the game was also one of the most talked about moments on Twitter. It was topped only by the winning moment as India dismissed the last Pakistani batsman to claim victory. Twitter trying to get the most out of live sporting events isn’t new, with Facebook also trying to grab a share of the pie. The network carried forward the #CWC15 experience for fans from where it had left for the last Football world cup. “Given the millions of cricket fans who are on Twitter, we wanted to create something that would let you follow and participate in this global event. We’ve created the Cricket World Cup timeline, your one stop for cricket Tweets, commentary and expert analysis, plus photos, videos and Vines from the sidelines at the world’s biggest cricketing event,” Twitter said on its blog.
The Cricket World Cup timeline available both on desktop and mobile has two timelines, Tournament and Match. These timelines give fans an instant snapshot of the match with commentary, expert and fan Tweets all coming through to a central point. These features become more interactive as the games begin like it was during last year’s football World Cup. Besides all the timelines have dedicated tabs for photos, consumer videos and Vine videos to give fans inside access to the year’s biggest sporting event.
On mobile, Twitter is highlighting the timeline feature “Explore Cricket World Cup” any time you fire up the app. Even if you miss that you can search for #CWC15 or the official match hashtag (e.g., #INDvPAK or #AUSvENG).
Twitter and ICC partnership
After the partnership at the ICC World T20 in 2014, Twitter again joined hands with ICC to bring a host of innovative and interactive features during the month long games. In addition to the Cricket World Cup Timeline, #AskCaptain has been a popular feature by which Twitter is bringing fans closer to the game and cricket stars.
With this feature ICC is giving Twitter users across the world a chance to ask the winning captain a question about the game. At every match, one Tweet having a question along with #AskCaptain is picked up by the commentators and asked to the winning captain live on global television feed during the post-match presentation.
The below tweets highlight how Twitter has once again evolved as the de facto for second screen experience.
— ICC (@ICC) March 18, 2015
In addition to this, ICC is producing a special digital wrap-up of every single match day #CWCDaily recap of the day via Twitter Video. It’s a five minute show that will go out each evening with news and views from right across every element of #CWC15. Fans are getting involved by sharing their views using #CWCDaily and interacting with the show.
The Twitter-ICC alliance is already showing results – over 8 million tweets sent around the tournament with over 800 Million live tweet impressions from the group stages. This comprises a 250% growth in the conversation around #cwc15.
Star Sports pushes Twitter’s second screen
Star Sports – the official broadcaster of the ICC World Cup 2015 – has been the brand to aggressively push Twitter’s second screen experience. Earlier in this month Star Sports hosted a show on Indian fans recollecting their favourite memory with Indian cricket team captain M.S. Dhoni. The best tweets were selected in the post match show.
— Twitter India (@TwitterIndia) March 10, 2015
Star Sports did another Twitter-TV synergy to promote its ongoing #WontGiveItBack campaign. The on air Twitter quizzing had personalized jerseys to be won by Twitter users.
It was recently revealed that Twitter is further experimenting with TV Timelines, a new second-screen experience that makes it easier to see tweets and media related to live television shows. The feature, being tested on a limited basis on the iOS app, is similar to Twitter’s World Cup but in this case Twitter is proactively reaching out to people who are tweeting about television.
According to ICC, globally on Facebook, 36 million people have generated 341 million interactions with cricket becoming a regularly trending topic throughout February and March. However, Facebook has lagged in bringing innovations for the ICC World Cup 2015 like Twitter. In fact Facebook which has more than 100 million monthly active users in India – a country which considers cricket as a religion, issued a release suggesting how marketers can be successful on Facebook during cricket matches and beyond.
Clearly, Twitter – which has so far struggled in gaining new users – is giving its best to bring innovations and has successfully transformed itself into the second screen experience app for CWC2015.