Betfair Presents Man Utd Player Live Social Q&A

Betfair used social media to leverage their Manchester United sponsorship rights and reach as many consumers as possible through a live player question and answer session on the brand’s Facebook page.


When granted a precious few hours access to some of the team’s star players ion January, the bookie brand made the most of the opportunity. In tandem with its agency Synergy and broadcast outfit Livestream, Betfair built a digital Q&A session. Providing fans with a rare chance to interact live with the players via Facebook and Twitter by sending in their own questions, hearing the answers and posting their comments and opinions during the live broadcast.


A PR team also ran a pre- and post-promotion programme through a range of leading national and regional football blogs and forums.


The 30-minute social show, presented by Rachel Brookes, starred midfielders Michael Carrick, Ashley Young and Nani. Utd fans could watch the social show by ‘liking’ the Betfair Facebook page and could then submit questions or comments by tweeting @BetfairSports with the #MUlive hashtag.


Nani even confessed that he regularly gets the hairdryer treatment from manager Sir Alex Ferguson.


According to Head of Online Marketing Ben Carter, Betfair’s own activation strategy is partly built on the mantra of ‘living and breathing social’ and the company’s marketing strategy places social media at the heart of its work.


Man Utd is one of the elite group of football clubs – which also includes Barcelona and Real Madrid – to break through the 20m Facebook likes barrier in 2011. Indeed, all three clubs actually activated around achieving the number. So, as a sponsor, it certainly makes media sense to connect to the clubs fans and its own consumers through social media. Indeed, more than 40,000 people tuned in to watch and around 1,000 questions were received during the broadcast. Furthermore, the tweets of the #MULive hashtag reached over 3.8m people (according to Tweetreach). Quotes from the event were featured in at least three national newspaper and branded footage appeared on local TV stations.




Betfair is developing something of a track record for innovative activation of its sponsorship rights. Recent work has ranged from its 10-Pin Bowling Viral (Stars & Strikes) to its PR-grabbing placement of QR Codes on Team GB’s women volleyball players bottoms at the London 2012 test event.


This initiative ads to that growing portfolio of experimentation with new media and alternatively technology platforms.



Team GB Volleyball QR Code Campaign









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