It wasn’t too long ago when to vote your favourite player into an All-Star Game for any sport you had to go to a game and try to poke out those little holes in a ballot card. But gone are those days.
As social media becomes more prevalent throughout almost everything we do, sport leagues have taken it as an opportunity to keep all of their fans involved, regardless of if they physically attend a game or not.
The NBA is currently doing this by inviting fans to vote for their favourite players to appear in the All-Star Game this year via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
The NBA is asking fans to post on one of these social networks with the hashtag “#NBABallot” along with the player they want to vote in. The NBA is then monitoring these channels and adding the results to their website voting and text message votes. They’re also allowing you to vote once a day, so some
And basketball fans around the world seem to be loving it.
As of right now, there’s still six days left for people to cast their votes. However, the NBA is already seeing a great response to this campaign. We used MAP, our social media monitoring and analytics software, to see just how well this campaign has been doing so far.
Starting from December 10th up until yesterday (voting started on the 11th), we found the #NBABallot hashtag used across 1.8 million tweets. That means that people have been voting for their favourite players at an average speed of 2,210 an hour over the past 33 days. Those are some pretty engaged fans.
What’s more is that it’s not only engaging people in the United States. The United States only accounts for 57.3% of all the votes cast so far. Votes are coming in from around the world. A look at our heat map of where tweets are originating from shows that people around the world are interested in the NBA and are casting their votes.
Over on Instagram the hype is quite large as well. A search for the #NBABallot hashtag on Instagram shows us that it’s been used their 207,670 times.
In a great move by the NBA and all of the teams around the league, we can see some examples above of pictures to help go with fans votes to make it as easy as possible to cast a vote on the network. All a fan needs to do if they don’t have a picture of their favourite player is download a pre-made picture, which are designed to grab attention and encourage more people to vote and use the hashtag, and upload it to their own account.
Unfortunately, due to Facebook’s privacy settings we couldn’t get a great amount of data behind how many people are posting the #NBABallot hashtag, but if Twitter and Instagram are any indication, we think it’s safe to assume that they’re seeing large numbers as well. You may even have some basketball friend’s of your own who are making posts like these:
Adding the social voting component to the All-Star Game voting process a few years ago was a great move by the NBA. They realized that their fan base extended past the people that could come into the arena and punch the little holes. It even extended past the United States. By giving fans around the world a chance to participate in this event and making it easy as possible for them, the NBA is solidifying their global audience.
And for those of you wondering which players are being voted for the most, only the NBA knows for sure as they are the only ones with access to all of the numbers. However, according to their last count on January 8, Lebron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors are leading the league in total votes respectively in first and second place. We thought it would be interesting to see how they faired against each other on Twitter. So we searched for mentions of their names along side the #NBABallot hashtag and found that Twitter mimics the NBA’s count with James leading the way 105,727 tweets, but Curry isn’t far behind with 89,132 tweets of his own.