By Pete DeLuca
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is once again pushing the boundaries of social media. In a press conference earlier this week, the company announced plans to stream a live, high definition broadcast of UFC 126 to fans who press the “like” box on their official Facebook page. The sold out event takes place at 8:25 PM on February 5 from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas – and it is free to all Facebook fans.
Since their inception in 1993, UFC has become one of the fastest growing sports. Their fan base stretches worldwide – with programming shown in over 130 different countries. The majority of their fans are young and passionate, which makes UFC President Dana White’s plan to embrace social media a perfect fit.
“Fans all over the world have been telling me that they want to see this fight. You got it,” said White in a recent article in The Telegraph. “We are going to be broadcasting live on Facebook, giving UFC fans all over the world access to a great fight between Kid Yamamoto and Demetrious Johnson. Plus, we’re continuing to show that we are the best at using social media to attract new fans.”
This is not the first time the UFC used their social media platforms to their advantage. White, who personally has over 1.3 million followers on Twitter, is known to tweet locations in major cities giving away free tickets and merchandise. The sport’s biggest names, such as Forrest Griffin and Rampage Jackson, interact with fans on Twitter, and the online application “Fight Nation” has thousands of downloads.
Many companies are using Facebook and Twitter as a way to provide news and updates to the public. The UFC uses their social media pages as a way to grow their product by enhancing the overall fan experience. I admire Dana White’s marketing plan and commitment to social media – he has earned his 4.6 million fans.
Pete DeLuca is Manager of Creative Services at Maroon PR. Contact him at Pete@MaroonPR.com