We have Iwan Llewelyn, Head of Digital at Soapbox London to tell us about the role of social media in the world of modern business and the specific sector of high-end motorsports.
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What role does social media play in building a sports person’s profile today? Has that dramatically changed over the last years?
As the way people consume news starts to shift towards digital platforms, social media plays an imperative role in shaping a famous sports person’s profile. With this, content ownership is becoming increasingly important and by having an element of control over what is uploaded, an athlete is able to shape their personality and how they want to be perceived by the public.
Having an increased social presence also allows the athlete to talk to other audiences (fans/followers/other high-profile individuals) that they may otherwise not have access to, such as people in music or fashion business.
Brands see athletes as a way to increase their reach and the ability to target specific demographics.
Then how important are social media platforms for sponsors and partners of athletes, racing drivers or other sportspeople?
They’re vital. All commercial deals will now require a certain level of social media activation. For athletes, a larger social audience brings greater market value allowing them to secure better and bigger deals with brands looking to use them to promote their goods or service.
Brands see athletes as a way to increase their reach and the ability to target specific demographics. By using athletes, brands can express their messaging through a relatable source which, if done correctly, can reap huge benefits.
What could Formula 1 learn from other sports in terms of social media?
Formula 1 is starting to make the change towards original digital content, having identified that they need to appeal to a younger audience. It is important to keep on top of a content turnaround as social highlight packages should be similar to those on TV.
The sport must continue to work with the drivers to get even more behind-the-scenes access and footage in order to build out Formula 1’s personality.
By the time you’ve read this we’re all already out of date, the most important factor is currency – it’s key!