The athlete, a man orchestra of networks

“Be careful not to exercise, there are people who get well paid for it,” said Canadian economist and humorist Stephen Leacock (1869-1944). An expensive mantra from a health standpoint, but still relevant a century later. According to figures released by the government, the budget allocated to sport in France increased by 23% between 2021 and 2022. In addition, a study published in February 2023 by the BPCE group estimates the share of sport in France at 2.6% of GDP, equivalent to 64 billion euros.

This economic, cultural and political success, much more than the brilliant hits with the ball or bat in hand, could not have happened without the diligent contribution of the media. Lto print mediaradio Then television played a huge role in the popularity of various disciplines and her aesthetesas prove lexplosion of television rights in the last fifty years. For the French Ligue 1 championship alone, we have gone from €2 million in 1984-1985 to over €748 million between 2016-2020. The top 14 have now surpassed the €113.6m mark for the 2023 season after starting the century with just €10.7m for the financial year. Today, the internet (general or specialized websites, blogs, live streaming, online sports channels, etc.) and above all social networks have taken over and become indispensable for competitions and clubs that want to find their way into the hearts of fans … and in the pockets of investors.

The sporty one in the cages Advertising

Typically, a sports organization provides services that it has to sell to business partners. To do this, it must continually prove to its sponsors that it has something worthwhile to offer them: an engaged audience. In addition, his achievements on a sporting level are crucial because that is how he can develop fanbase and to ensure lenient media coverage…which in turn will affect its visibility with potential investors. At national and supranational levels to increase its audience and maintain its commercial success. Social networks allow the story of a club and its team to be told differently in order to better assert its identity,” explains Laurent Bringé, Associate Professor in the Media Department at UADE University in Buenos Aires. Even or even more so when it comes to the feat of signing Lionel Messi to his team.

PSG’s announcement of the Argentine’s August 2021 transfer – supporting videos on the club’s Instagram and YouTube pages showing him at his new stadium – caused a stir on social media. According to a market watch by the Visibrain platform, more than 1.6 million tweets were published by netizens in just four days, and the club’s Instagram account recorded almost 2 million new subscribers in just one week, to happily break the bar with 40 million fans. The strategy social media from PSG is delsewhere a case ofSchool of successful synergy between The sports department and The commercial component. The club has built its community gradually, over time and organically. With each high-sounding new name – Ibrahimovic, Neymar and now Messi – scores of foreign fans came to cheer him on. Ten years ago, the capital club only had 500,000 spectators Fan distributed across all its networks. Today it’s more than 150 million, a 30,000% increase. Since the arrival of the Argentinian maestro, Paris-Saint-Germain have even welcomed an average of one million additional fans every week.

passage of bAyour media

For this reason, according to Laurent Bringé, “the role of PR professionals in sports organizations has gradually shifted from producing advertising content, mostly broadcast on television, to developing different types of formats focused on performance.” of the organization and its athletes, formats that are then fed to social media and picked up by third-party accounts.” In this regard, we can cite the YouTube and Instagram channels of football clubs, who do their utmost to post ultra-smooth images of their training sessions to promote their Showing athletes “united” by the sheer joy of playing together on the field. From a spectator’s point of view… become the fan – the grail – by repeating the content we never tire of watching his protégé lay a small bridge or fake body down for his captain before falling into his arms. We’ll even be tempted to purchase the warm-up tunic featured in the video, which we would certainly never have discovered otherwise. Full Circle.

As for athletes, many of them have understood for years that by orchestrating their own statements on social networks, they could easily escape traditional media and the risk of their words being falsified. Tennis player Gaël Monfils has stood out for several months for being one of the first athletes of his caliber to publish vlogs every week in which he talks about his daily life, between sessions at the physiotherapist, his new life as a father or even about a promotional event organized on the site reported Rolland-Garros dishes. The famous Paris tournament would have been stupid if it had not had a benevolent audience perfectly experienced in tennis matches. To help athletes To better Conquer these new playgrounds without blushingS, many agencies en communication as ComOver in France or Viral Nation in ANDtats universityS saw the day.

A double edged game

It has to be said that the topic of mental health of elite athletes has been at the center of discussions for several years. Ahead of the Tokyo Games, which will take place from July 23 to August 8, 2021, American gymnast Simone Biles, who is a favorite for gold in many categories, withdrew from team competitions to prioritize her mental health: ” I just feel like us.” We need to focus on ourselves as people, not just our athletes. Because I feel like sometimes we lose touch with our human feelings. Agent Marie-Anik L’Allier had commented on her decision, stating that “social media” during a major competition “really is a double-edged sword.” On the one hand, having positive comments and encouragement can be very, very intoxicating and very intoxicating . On the other hand, we can always come across messages that lead us precisely into an area that we want to avoid.” If the pressure to look at yourself is more important than that of the result, then surely it’s time to ease up.

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