SportsCenter, ESPN's flagship brand, is the sports fans' preeminent source for news, highlights and analysis of their favorite sports. The impact of ESPN's brand goes beyond television through a variety of platforms. One of the ways SportsCenter stretches across multiple screens is through Twitter, which engages fans with exciting content at all hours, encompassing ESPN's mission to "serve sports fans, anytime, anywhere." Twitter serves as a platform for SportscCenter to interact with over 24 million followers by sharing their favorite moments in a way only ESPN can, through original videos and art, show segments and live coverage of events. The platform is a trusted source of sports news, reporting accurate stories as they break.
The account strives to contribute to SportsCenter on-air in various ways: by curating tweets from athletes and celebrities and featuring fan content through the popular #SCtop10 and #SC3Stars hashtags.
The show's presence on Twitter has grown with SportsCenter's evolving nature as a show. The account works with SC on the Road, Scott Van Pelt's SportsCenter and all SC@Night shows to share top interviews, debates and segments. This way, fans never miss the best moments from SportsCenter.
SportsCenter will always be a brand that combines hard-hitting sports news and amazing storytelling, which the Twitter account exemplifies by being the first to share big sports stories, relevant articles and features. The account works to be ever-present so fans can rely on the leader in sports to keep them knowledgeable anytime, anywhere.
@SportsCenter's team intensely studies trends and effective methods of interacting with fans by exploring engagement metrics each day. Data shows that certain athletes always resonate with fans, so SportsCenter delivers more coverage on them. The team prepares original GIFs, illustrations, Vines and video clips of the top athletes and most popular plays of the moment to share on Twitter.
Twitter is the best platform to keep followers informed on events as they happen, so the account capitalizes on this by providing live coverage of the biggest games of the day, providing fans the latest in their favorite sports. ESPN is first and foremost a journalistic body, so @SportsCenter also works with Bristol's news desk to report the most accurate stories in breaking news situations.
A large portion of @SportsCenter's social presence is on television. Our Twitter involves fans in their favorite show through call-to-action tweets such as #SCtop10 and #SC3Stars, both of which help produce show content by identifying the best plays from social, draw attention to lesser-known plays and surface great content. Social producers choose the best tweets from fans to feature within the show itself, giving fans incentive to tune in and feel more involved.
SportsCenter continues to evolve as a brand, and @SportsCenter grows with it by staying active in providing fans with show content past the program slot. SportsCenter on the Road shares behind-the-scenes moments on Twitter, involving the on-site anchors, fans and athletes. The best moments from SC @Night and the Scott Van Pelt edition of SportsCenter are shared for fans to see the following day. These efforts help keep the show relevant in the digital space and allow viewers to continue seeing the best of SportsCenter even as viewer habits change.
The results of SportsCenter's social strategy demonstrate its success. The account grew in social engagements by 150% from 2014 to 2015 and SportsCenter ranked as the #1 TV show for social engagement in January 2016, according to Shareablee. SC is the leading sports account on Twitter with over 24 million followers; no competing sports network account has more than 2 million followers. The brand's signature #SCtop10 is used more than 100,000 times each month. A competing network's leading hashtag, in comparison, registers just 2,500 uses. #SCtop10 and #SC3Stars have also been used by multiple sports teams, which SportsCenter capitalizes on by responding and interacting with those teams.
SportsCenter's presence on Twitter has created monetization opportunities that lead to additional revenue for ESPN.
Understanding what fans care about has made SportsCenter the top source through the most popular sporting events. The @SportsCenter handle is the #1 most retweeted handle during the NFL Regular Season in 2014, the NCAA Tournament in 2015 and the Summer Olympics in 2012, as noted by Nielsen Social.
SportsCenter's presence on Twitter is among the highest engaging platforms in sporting news. The account gives fans live, accurate and high-quality content at all hours, personifying SportsCenter's mission "to serve sports fans anytime, anywhere."