Six Nations on social media: Even gender split, and lots of Americans

Participants in a total of 761,000 conversations on social media about the 2016 Six Nations rugby tournament were an equal mix of men and women, and more than two-fifths of participants were from the US, according to analysis from Meltwater.

#sixnations #rugby: Six Nations got the conversation going (Credit: Michael Steele/Getty Images)
#sixnations #rugby: Six Nations got the conversation going (Credit: Michael Steele/Getty Images)

The media monitoring firm's analysis of social media conversations during the tournament shows that such activity reached its peak on Sunday 7 February, the first of five weekends of fixtures. The week 7-13 February saw a total of 150,000 conversations on social media.

Meltwater found that 51 per cent of people involved in these conversations were men and 49 per cent women, and that 42 per cent came from the UK – encompassing fans of England, Scotland, Wales and the combined Irish team – followed by the same number again from the United States, four per cent from the Republic of Ireland, and two per cent from France.

Half of conversations (50 per cent) took place on Twitter, a further 20 per cent on Facebook and 12 per cent on online forums.

In total, 67 per cent of conversations mentioned companies sponsoring the tournament, according to Meltwater. Half of those mentioned Guinness in some form, and a fifth mentioned tournament sponsor RBS. Other oft-mentioned sponsors included O2, Peugeot and Accenture.

Heidi Myers, director of marketing and comms at Meltwater, said: "A more diverse range of brands could look into sponsorship opportunities as the Six Nations was actually talked about equally by both men and women. This demonstrates rugby’s growth in popularity across the demographics and that advertisers should not just look at male-orientated sponsorship opportunities for sporting events."

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