The UEFA Champions League final has broken a record of over 1 billion social media interactions, cementing its place as the world's biggest annual sporting event.
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Available and comparable data showed that the final of the world's premier football club competition outperformed all other major events in 2019 by more than 30%, while according to the video optimisation and online video analytics company Conviva, "the UEFA Champions League final is now the biggest sports event ever on Instagram stories from a single account" with 177 million impressions.
The stand-out figure of 1.09 billion social media interactions includes all engagements (likes, shares and comments) and video views, 110% up from the final a year ago. Interactions were tracked across all of UEFA's social accounts as well as the official accounts of the participating teams, players and various media organisations around the world. Impressively, almost half – 486 million – of the interactions were generated from UEFA's social media platforms, with the remaining 604 million coming from other sources.
"For years, the UEFA Champions League final has been the biggest one-day sporting event in terms of the media coverage it gets, and the results from the Madrid final corroborate that this is also true on social media," said UEFA marketing director Guy-Laurent Epstein.
"At UEFA, we actively invest in developing content that ignites interactions and conversations among our fans, the participating clubs, media and our commercial partners. Despite the UEFA Champions League being positioned at the forefront of media and fan engagement, we will continue devoting ourselves to broadening the reach and delivering great content to our fans."
Furthermore, UEFA actively supported its commercial partners by promoting their activities in and around the final on social media. Given the reach and popularity of UEFA's social channels, they can be used to engage different targeted audiences for each partner with specific branded messages.
For example, the UEFA Champions League final opening ceremony, presented by Pepsi, which saw Imagine Dragons perform minutes before the match, attracted an impressive 88 million video views and 381 million impressions across Facebook and Instagram.
It is not only the UEFA Champions League final that surpassed all expectations. The competition itself – from group stage to the final (1 September 2018 to 9 June 2019) – drew over 6.5 billion interactions originating from UEFA's own social media channels, including 3 billion cross-platform video views.
The 2019/20 season has also kicked off strongly with 149.5 million interactions generated on UEFA's owned platforms by content around the group stage draw in Monaco in late August, which is more than four times the amount of interactions compared with last season.