Real Madrid: The Brand to Beat on Facebook

A brand that I’ve been closely following the past few weeks on Facebook is Real Madrid and their campaign to reach 100 million Facebook fans. As it stands right now, Real Madrid can claim to be the first brand to have reached the milestone on the social media platform closely followed by rival FC Barcelona and more recently Coca Cola. But how exactly did they get there? Did the Facebook followers naturally just tick over the number with little attention or effort? Or was this occasion the culmination of a cleverly planned marketing campaign?

Some highlights from Neymar’s performance which created so much buzz!

Traditional rivals FC Barcelona and Real Madrid often find each other lining up against each other on and off the soccer pitch vying for superiority in the ever changing landscape of sport. On this occasion however, social media was the venue of choice for the two giants to lock horns and try to outdo the other. Following a dazzling performance in the Champions League, FC Barcelona’s Neymar was the focus of videos across social media which drew the club into reaching distance of Real Madrid’s total number of Facebook followers. This prompted them to challenge their fans to spread the word and propel the club to be the first to 100 million followers and beat Real Madrid to the title. Madrid seeing this began their own campaign to oppose this push and maintain their lead in the race to 100 million.

Utilisng the star power of Rafael Nadal and David Beckham and their own Facebook pages they created a call to arms of Madrid supporters encouraging them to make history by pushing the club to the milestone. In addition to this banners and regular posts were made across the page encouraging the sharing and spreading of the club on all media platforms. The cherry on top being the chance to win a signed Cristiano Ronaldo jersey in return for just liking the page!

Cristiano Ronaldo

Ultimately these strategies paid off for Madrid as they did indeed beat Barcelona to the title in considerable style. Meanwhile Barcelona were left red faced as it was revealed they had resorted to private messaging fans begging for likes rather desperately in an attempt to keep up with their rivals.

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While these last minute actions certainly did gather an additional thousand fans or so, the greatest achievement by Madrid however must certainly be its ability to gather the initial large mass of fans and keep them involved on a Facebook Page whilst continuing to grow. I believe this can be attributed to the pages excellent and timely delivery of relevant content. Anything current in the news about the club is posted and addressed in an official capacity by the administrators. The content creators are aware of milestones for the club, its associates and players and are quick to notify fans of their progress towards them. Recent press conferences are broadcast live or delayed so fans can directly interact with events at the club as they happen. In inevitable quiet periods for the club quizzes, competitions and throwback videos are posted to maintain buzz around the community. There are also an abundance of of links to the official club websites and store no doubt prompting many to take the next step in their fandom and purchase a membership or form of memorabilia. In short their is always something going on and a reason for fans to be talking about their favorite soccer team.

Congratulations Real Madrid!

No doubt this will all be seen as a big win in the Madrid camp as it further allows them to solidify their position as the biggest soccer club in the world and a leading international brand. This is a great example of how a brand can harness its social media presence to not only further its reach globally but also get a step up on some of its more powerful rivals domestically. Not to mention the revenue generated by 100 million fans all visiting the Madrid Facebook page!

Have you seen any brand handle social media for such a large group of fans as well as this? If so let me know in the comments and Ill see you around the blog!

Some Interesting Links:


The Death of YouTube? Probably Not.

It must have been a radically different environment in the headquarters of Google/YouTube these past few weeks as the organisation faced its most testing period of 2017 thus far and maybe of all time attempting to deal with the event now known as the…..

Very Dramatic!

This catastrophic period which has had major consequences financially for the tech giant began rather humbly however in the contents of a news article from the Wall Street Journal. The article in question bringing to light evidence that advertisers on the popular site were being broadcast alongside certain offensive videos containing racism, violence and extremist propaganda. This in turn led to the mass exodus of paying advertisers on the platform numbering at over 250 individual organisations that have terminated their relationship with the website. Large scale organisation’s such as McDonald’s, Pepsi-co, Starbucks and Walmart have all pulled their support and funding for advertisements on the site which is estimated to ultimately cost parent company Google $750 million in ad revenue (That’s a lot of money $$).

YouTuber The Act Man has a great summary here!

Who can blame these advertisers though? The last thing you want to do in this modern age is to offend someone (As Pepsi-co discovered themselves this week) and it only seems logical to minimize your risks. Imagine the marketing nightmare of a McDonald’s ad appearing next to an extremist recruitment video, how are you gonna explain that one Ronald? No, surely it would be far better to spent your advertising budget somewhere else, somewhere more controlled, maybe in the Wall Street Journal?

Its no coincidence that the mainstream media has been fueling this topic and I believe targeting YouTube with negative press as part of a larger campaign to deter advertisers. Earlier this year YouTube’s most subscribed content creator PewDiePie was accused of including anti Semitic messages in his videos which ultimately cost him an entertainment contract with Disney as well as a second season of his paid series on YouTube itself. The people responsible for bringing this information to light? The Wall Street Journal of course.


Between the two of these ongoing incidents a significant amount of damage has been done to YouTube’s reputation and its standing as a viable medium for advertising, no doubt causing brands to seek more stable alternatives.

For a lesser organisation this could signal the end times and indicate the impending demise of the platform, however this has not been the case. YouTube’s response, the implementation of a 10,000 view minimum on videos before advertising can be included not only a stroke of genius but a great example of flexibility on the medium. Content creators of smaller channels still have the freedom to create anything they wish without moderation as YouTube has always maintained, while larger channels can still actively advertise on their videos granted they offer non offensive material (As was always expected). The rights of the creators are upheld and the reputation of the advertisers are kept in the highest regard.

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So many brands

It will be very interesting to see how advertisers respond to the new system in the coming weeks but I believe it will be mostly positive and satisfy all of their concerns. With their advertisements kept on appropriate videos and their reputations safely maintained, they will be no doubt keen to interact with the websites 30 million visitors daily.

So what do you think? Can YouTube recover from this huge blow or is it the end? Let me know in the comments and Ill see you around the blog!

Some Interesting Links:










A Good Cloud is a Safe Cloud

Cloud storage has revolutionized file sharing and data retrieval in the past few years enabling consumers and future marketers like ourselves  immediate access to the data we need in a variety of ways. However the security of this technology has always been questionable at best with regular supposed “hacks” and “leaks” of sensitive information over the past few years. Obviously such compromises of security could be catastrophic for an organisation that specializes in the use of this technology and one would assume all necessary steps are being taken to minimize the risks involved. With the constantly changing face of technology however is it truly reasonable to expect complete security of data? Can any organisation be expected to anticipate attacks and eliminate threats before they even show themselves?

Are you at risk?

Apple is currently tackling these questions and more as they face off with a group calling themselves The Turkish Crime Family who claim to have stolen the account data of initially 200 million accounts rising to around 600 million in their most recent statements. This account data allegedly has been stolen from one of Apples remote servers holding sensitive account information regarding the devices of its customers. In addition to the theft of this data the group also claims to have the ability to factory reset the devices of all the affected customers essentially causing everything on their Apple products to be deleted. The group demands that Apple pay $100,000 in online currency or iTunes gift cards by April 7 or they will go ahead with selling the data and resetting the devices.

Everything as normal at Apple

Apples response to this has been to release a statement explaining that this data has not come from any hacks to their own systems but it is possible that it came from partnered third party servers. They also claim to be actively working to prevent against unauthorized access to accounts and working closely with law enforcement to find the parties responsible for the threats.

So is this a catastrophe waiting to happen to the biggest company in the world or just another day at the office? Only time will tell for now with all to be revealed on the 7th of April, so grab some popcorn and wait for the show to begin!

So lets put our digital marketing hats on and assume that the attacks go ahead and the data is revealed to be legitimately stolen from Apple putting millions of customers at risk, what are the implications for Apple?

Where to go from here?

Historically if we look at other similar hacks such as the Dropbox 2012-2016 fiasco where millions of users data was stolen as a result of a Dropbox employee reusing a password, the consequences for the organisation were not so severe. The company updated their security measures, dealt with individual cases as they came and made it mandatory for all users to change their password with what I interpret as minimal consumer backlash. All outwards communications and messages from the organisation were detailed, consistent and reassuring to their consumers which I think saved their brand quite considerably. I myself have always used Dropbox and my use of their services never changed or lessened over this period, I simply changed my password and got on with my life knowing they had everything under control as their email suggested .


I feel though in the case of Apple there may be quite a bit more backlash especially concerning the amount of users involved. Considering the difference between Dropbox’s 68 million and Apples 600 million users affected I think its fair to say this has a lot more potential to create a fuss. Especially when you consider that resetting devices affects the everyday life of customers as appose to their data being at risk on the internet rather passively. A phone shutting down and forgetting everything is just about as in your face as a hack can get and its very likely to cause some red faces in the Apple community. If consumers lose confidence in a service so critical now to the connectivity of Apples products where would it go?

Could this be a major disaster for Apple or will it just blow over much the same as the Dropbox incident did? Hey your phone might reset but at least its not gonna blow up in your hand! Whatever you think leave a comment below and let me know about it!

Some Interesting Links: