How the London 2012 Olympics’ Athletes’ Hub Boosts Social Media Engagement

Unless you’re a die-hard synchronized swimming fan, you may not necessarily watch or engage in the Olympics when they happen to roll around every 4 years. It would seem that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) must have recognized this fact, because the franchise has undergone a complete image transformation for the London 2012 Olympics and are now being referred to as the “The Social Media Olympics.” Efforts to make the Olympics more interactive by using various social media outlets have been highly successful so far; the official Olympic Instagram (@Olympics) has already garnered more than 30,000 followers, and the official Google+ account already boasts more than 600,000 fans.

Subsequently, the IOC has brilliantly chosen to harness the power of social media by launching their own interactive website called the “Olympic Athletes’ Hub.” The site is designed to encourage fans to engage with athletes directly through social media sites like Tumblr, Foursquare, Google+, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  True to it’s name, it will act as a “hub” by aggregating the social media activity of more than 2,000 of the 2012 Olympians to make it easier for fans to interact with and keep track of their favorite athletes.

The Olympic Athlete hub has some seriously awesome features, and NMR wanted to break them down for you:

Inside the Olympic Village

This is a section of the Olympic Athlete Hub where users are encouraged to interact directly with some of the top Olympians by tweeting their questions using the hashtag #askanathlete. Each day, a new olympian is up to respond to those users, and the Q&A tweets will appear on the front page of the Olympic Athlete’s Hub.

The Olympic Challenge

This portion of the hub will be launched when the Olympic games begin and will allow users to predict the outcome of their favorite Olympic sporting events. In  fantasy football-inspired social games, the users will compete with people around the world and will be able to share their predictions on Twitter and Facebook, which will serve to further encourage fan interaction.

Olympic Athlete Profiles

By searching for their favorite event, athlete or sport, users are able to peruse thousands of athlete profiles that include live feed from their personal social media sites, their events, and where they rank in followers. You can friend or follow their sites and keep up with their events as they live tweet from the Olympic games.

Olympic Rewards

Interacting with athletes is incentivized further by a Hub feature that allows users who create a profile using their Facebook or Twitter to earn rewards and badges. They even have the chance to win tickets to the actual Olympic games by checking in on Foursquare and earning the “Olympic ticket” badge. Users compete against people from all around the world to “unlock” badges and earn rewards by performing social media feats like following a specific celebrity athlete or a certain overall amount of athletes on Twitter.So what do you think–will the Hub encourage you to be more interactive this Olympics season?

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