When Mashable took a look at the English Premier League’s social media side last week, the main takeaway was that the 2012 season marked the big social push of the world’s most high-profile soccer league.
But Spain’s LigaBBVA — considered a tier below the EPL on the pitch, although it’s home to powerhouse clubs Real Madrid and FC Barcelona — actually looks to be world soccer’s digital leader. To get the fuller picture, we scoured social media sites, and consulted LigaBBVA as well as the Spanish sports and social media site Sportwist.
Perhaps the place where La Liga’s social media dominance shines most is with its biggest stars. Three of the top four sports-related Twitter accounts are from Spanish soccer — Real Madrid stars Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo have 10.7 and 9.9 million followers, respectively, while the FC Barcelona club account claims almost 5.2 million. Last month, Kaka became the first sports figure ever to break 10 million followers on the the network. Fellow LigaBBVA stars Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas, Gerard Pique, Carlos Puyol, Xabi Alonso and David Villa each top one million followers as well.
LigaBBVA engages fans extremely well on Facebook in particular. The league’s official page has more than 1 million fans. During a stretch in April, engagement peaked according to Sportwist, with more than 55% of those fans “talking about” LigaBBVA teams, matches and players — an outstanding level of engagement for a brand in any industry.
LigaBBVA also dominates world soccer leagues on Twitter. The @LigaBBVA profile counts more than 280,000 followers there, compared with the official @premierleague account’s approximately 209,000 followers. LigaBBVA also has a Klout score of 74, compared to the EPL’s score of 70. The German Bundesliga — considered by many the world’s third-best league in overall quality of play — has a Klout score of 49.
On the Chinese social network Sina Weibo, Spain’s soccer league has 155,000 followers, as well as an additional 106,000 fans on the similar Chinese network Ren Ren.
What powers LigaBBVA’s social media popularity? Real Madrid and FC Barcelona, arguably two of the world’s three most popular club teams. Consider this, for example: Barcelona has more than 31 million Facebook fans and about 5.2 million Twitter followers; Real Madrid has over 28 million Facebook fans and 4.7 million Twitter followers. No other LigaBBVA team approaches a combined total of 500,000.
Why do you think LigaBBVA beats out the EPL on social media? Let us know in the comments.
Image via iStockphoto, mikkelwilliam
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