LaLiga has reached another high-profile milestone, passing 100 million followers across all its social media platforms. Over six years’ work has seen the organization consolidate its presence on 12 different social media platforms, producing content in over 15 languages.
“Passing this digital milestone is an achievement which should be framed within LaLiga’s wide-reaching international growth strategy. We’ve gone from having 3.9 million followers at the end of the 2013/14 season to over 100 million today, a record figure reached with an average of 47,000 new followers per day,” says Alfredo Bermejo, Digital Strategy Director at LaLiga.
LaLiga currently has 22 profiles on 12 different social media platforms: Facebook; Twitter (LaLiga, LaLigaEN, LaLigaArab, LaLigaBRA, LaLigaFRA, LaLigaJP, LaLigaID, LaLigaTH, LaLigaSports, eSportsLaLiga, LaLiga Foundation); Instagram; YouTube; TikTok; four platforms in China (Weibo, WeChat, Douyin, Toutiao); two platforms in Russia (OK, VK); and Line (in three countries: Japan, Thailand and Indonesia). Notably, LaLiga is the first football league in the world to reach 5 million subscribers on its YouTube channel.
LaLiga’s audience is, like its social media channels, global and spread across the world. Spain registers the most amount of followers (around 7 million) but high concentrations of followers are found all over the world, including in Indonesia (more than 5.2 million followers); India (more than 5.1 million followers); Mexico (more than 5 million); Brazil (more than 4.7 million); and China & Egypt (more than 4 million.)
LaLiga engages with this global audience in over 15 languages, including English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Japanese, Portuguese, Turkish, Russian, Hindi, Bengali, Bahasa Indonesia, Thai, Danish, Vietnamese, Pidgin English, Swahili, Wolof, Lingala and Hebrew besides Spanish.
Ten keys to LaLiga’s success on social media
1. LaLiga begins to develop its digital strategy in 2013 following the arrival of Javier Tebas as president.
2. Opens its first profile on Russian social media platform VKontakte (February 2018).
3. Overtakes the Premier League on Facebook (May 2018).
4. Reaches an agreement with Facebook to live broadcast all matches on the Indian subcontinent (August 2018).
5. Overtakes the NBA on Facebook (November 2018).
6. Launches an eSports-specific profile on Twitter (March 2019).
7. Growth on South Asian social media with the launch of Line and Twitter profiles (March 2019).
8. Launches the most multitudinous TikTok challenge in Spain, involving over 50 million users across the world (August 2019).
9. Reaches a million followers on Chinese social media platform Douyin (November 2019).
10. Passes 100 million social media followers (January 2020).
Currently, over 25 people from 10 different countries make up the social media team based at LaLiga’s headquarters in Spain. In addition, many more based around the world collaborate on international projects to increase the visibility of the organisation and its social media platforms, among them the 45 LaLiga Global Network delegates, the International Development team and those spread across its nine international offices.
“This success is without doubt down to the team behind LaLiga’s social media channels and to the departments that support their growth,” explains Bermejo. “They have known how to adapt to our followers’ interests and needs to offer them engaging, quality content, which has in turn strongly positioned LaLiga both nationally and internationally.” The use of social media has thus become a key component in LaLiga’s internationalization strategy and that of its clubs.