In recent years social media has really exploded and boxing like most industries has been engulfed by this world wide internet phenomenon.
When you think back to when social media really became relevant in it’s initial days when platforms like MySpace and Bebo led the way, it’s quite startling to see where everything has gone in just a few short years. The sport of boxing nowadays really revolves around
the world of Twitter and to a lesser but still relevant extent – Facebook.
It seems like everytime a big story in the world of boxing breaks, inevitably it stems from Twitter. I guess it makes sense really when you think about it. No matter what online publication a boxing journalist might work for, it still takes time to craft an article and get it published. Whereas on Twitter a well known promoter like Oscar De La Hoya or a big time fighter like Floyd Mayweather can make an announcement within seconds on their next big show or upcoming fight. You just can’t beat the speed of it!
Everything from potential domestic match ups to promoters falling out publicly seems to make it’s way into the world of social media these days. It surely can only be a good thing as if anything it has really brought the boxers and the characters within the boxing world closer to the fan at home. This link has never been so close, to the point where fans can actually take part in discussions with fighters, promoters
and journalists online and express their views like never before. It’s a win win when you really think about it.
Boxing like any business is customer driven. Without a customer you simply have no business, no jobs, no free market, no trade, no enterprise, no nothing. The customer is the most vital aspect of any business in my opinion (speaking as an online marketing professional in my day job) and I think the sport of boxing has really started to embrace the customer (the fan) in recent years.
I believe what really sparked this change in mindset was a few years back when the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) burst onto the scene. Say what you like about the sport of mixed martial arts (of which the UFC is the premier brand) but the guys at the UFC are one of the best sports promotional juggernauts you’ll likely see. They spotted how important social media was to their business a few years ago and the potential it had to bring the fans closer to the athletes like ever before. Couple this with putting on great fights that fans genuinely want to see on a consistent basis and you’ve got a recipe for success.
I think boxing took note of how well the UFC were promoting their brand through things like Twitter and Facebook and thus caused the boxing world to up it’s game, for want of a better phrase. If you consider how demand is driven now for the boxing product (fights), a lot of the initial interest and gauging of consumer (fan) reaction is conducted on Twitter. I know this from listening to interviews from the likes of Leonard Ellerbe (CEO of Mayweather Promotions) and Eddie Hearn (Matchroom Boxing) that Twitter is where they go initially to see what fans are saying about a muted fight before getting serious about putting a fight together.
It’s crazy to think that in such a short a time frame how social media has taken over the boxing world. The dinosaur days of promoting fights by handing out flyers and hosting radio adverts now look like they are coming to an end. Why would you bother? If you’re Floyd Mayweather and have millions of followers on Twitter, you can just let the fans know for free in the space of seconds what you’re plans are as regards upcoming fights.
Social media, a phenomenon that continues to grow and continues to elevate the sport of boxing into the 21st century by letting it’s most important people (the fans) have their say