UFC Gains Over 60,000 “Likes” On Facebook Page Over Weekend Live Stream

January 24, 2011

Last week, the UFC announced that two fights (later changed to four) on the non-televised portion of Saturday night’s Fight for the Troops event would be streamed live on its Facebook page, but as a prerequisite to watch the fights, fans had to “like” the UFC page.

Since the announcement was made official by the UFC, MMAPayout has tracked the number of “Likes” on the UFC facebook page, and we can now report the results.

- On the night of the announcement, the UFC had 4,547,665 “likes” on its page.

- At the end of Saturday night, after the fights were streamed live on facebook, the number of “likes” had increased to 4,607,413 which is an increase of roughly 59,748 “likes”, a gain of 1.31%.

- At the end of the weekend, UFC had tallied 66,210 “likes”, which was an increase of 1.46%.

Payout Perspective:

As everyone else, I was curious to see how the UFC would further utilize their facebook page to grow their brand and attract more viewers, and showing free prelims was a great way to start doing that.  You can catch some more of the Fight for the Troops analysis in our Payout write-up, but I wanted to point out that streaming the prelims on facebook brought on some mixed feelings by the MMA fanbase.  Some fans touted the great stream quality they were getting, while others complained that the feed was cutting out and caused them to miss parts of the fights.  Fan satisfaction of a live streamed event on the internet will always be dependent on tons of factors such as ISP, hosting servers, PC specs, etc.  You also have a subset of fans who enjoy inviting their friends over and watching the fights on their big screen HD TV, others who avoid social networking and who had to create an account “just to watch the fights”.  Other fans have expressed their frustration in not having one home for UFC prelims, and constantly having to see where they will plan on hosting them next, which causes many of them to miss them altogether. The mixed reaction by the UFC fanbase was very intriguing, and its really an untapped and unexplored area by all notable sporting leagues.

As for the numbers, its tough to say what the 60k gained “likes” will do for the UFC.  We don’t have exact numbers on how many fans actually watched the live stream, but by using facebook, the UFC was able to gather some great viewership statistics, giving them yet a more detailed picture for their ever-growing fan-base.  These numbers will provide an interesting study for the UFC, by utilizing facebook and its 500+ million users, they have now used yet another form of social media to further push their brand and product worldwide.

11 Responses to “UFC Gains Over 60,000 “Likes” On Facebook Page Over Weekend Live Stream”

  1. Tweets that mention UFC Gains 60,000 “Likes” On Facebook Page Over Weekend Live Stream : MMAPayout.com: The Business of MMA -- Topsy.com on January 24th, 2011 3:07 PM

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by MMA Headliner, dilletaunt and Tommy Messano, MMA Supremacy. MMA Supremacy said: UFC Gains 60,000 “Likes” On Facebook Page Over Weekend Live Stream http://tinyurl.com/6hdnepe #MMA #MMAPayout #UFC #facebook #fb [...]

  2. Anthony on January 25th, 2011 5:47 AM

    Facebook had more than 600 million active monthly users.

  3. Matt C. on January 25th, 2011 7:34 AM

    I have few questions about the ‘likes” and viewing the stream on Facebook. On Facebook most people use their real names and reveal their age and all kinds of information.

    So by streaming on Facebook does the UFC have the ability to breakdown exactly who was watching the event by demographics?

    Exactly how far can they break it down? Could they potentially break it down to who each individual Facebook user was that viewed the stream?

    Also how useful is that information to the UFC itself and to it’s advertising partners?

  4. AlxRodz on January 25th, 2011 7:47 AM

    Matt C., gathering fresh, motivated and interested contacts is the name of the game.

    I’m not sure they would be able to break the viewers to an individual level, but they could probably go down to geographics and others that might be enough for them.

    But keep in mind, 60K+ means 60K+ people receiving UFC’s updates and possibly email/ private messages as well.

  5. jv on January 25th, 2011 8:30 AM

    >”Exactly how far can they break it down? Could they potentially break it down to who each individual Facebook user was that viewed the stream?”

    The advertisers can get that kind of information for the vast majority of users. So it is possible for the UFC to get it but they might have to pay for it. Firefox and Chrome are coming hard and fast with an extension to the HTML headers to tell companies to stop spying on the end user. They are trying to head off the regulations the FCC is currently working on. I saw that my comment from yesterday was deleted but Facebook is constantly in hot water with the US and other government over the miss-appropriation of users personal information.

  6. Matt C. on January 25th, 2011 9:54 AM

    Yea I just read a few minutes ago about Chrome releasing their add-on to kill tracking cookies.

    http://www.webmonkey.com/2011/01/chrome-add-on-kills-tracking-cookies/

    However even without those tracking cookies the fact that people have to log-in and be on Facebook to watch the videos they are giving data on who watched the event. At least if Facebook is willing to share it with them for a price or not. So basically I was just wondering exactly what data it was possible for the UFC to get from Facebook and how beneficial could that data be. In what ways could that data be used to improve operations?

  7. UFC Gains Over 60,000 “Likes” On Facebook Page Over Weekend Live Stream : MMAPayout.com: The Business of MMA | TKO Management on January 25th, 2011 11:06 AM

    [...] via UFC Gains Over 60,000 “Likes” On Facebook Page Over Weekend Live Stream : MMAPayout.com: The Bus…. [...]

  8. Jose Mendoza on January 25th, 2011 2:35 PM

    It’s obviously not an exact science. I’ve read about good amount of users who used their wives/gf fb account, or people who created fake accounts just to watch the fights, etc. Its not exact, but once you “like” the UFC, you are forever tagged to them and they can see who you are, where you are from, age etc. I am pretty sure fb will be trying to cash in on this very quickly, but not sure how for along they are right now.

    As for the stream it self, it was most likely hosted from the place UFC.com usually hosts streams. What fb gave them was essentially a portal to log in and leave some of your info behind as you watch the fights. The chat feature was pretty cool, though a lot of folks got in trouble because the chats actually got posted on their fb wall, so if you were using someone else’s fb, you just left a history of your chat for them to read. =)

    jv:

    If your post was deleted, it was most an accident. Sorry about that!

  9. jv on January 27th, 2011 12:58 AM

    Interesting that FB is about to start letting advertisers use your like messages in their adds. It will be interesting to see if the UFC is about to start doing that. And in typical FB style. No opt out.

    http://arstechnica.com/web/news/2011/01/no-opting-out-from-facebook-turning-your-check-ins-likes-into-ads.ars

    The reason why I said most earlier Jose is that most don’t take measures to protect their identities. The power to identify some one is just partially one the browser. When you combine the IP address with all the cookies from sites you have visited and then combine that with massive databases of personal information that companies sell on you identification becomes relatively easy.

  10. Fighting for More Facebook Fans: Tips from the UFC (yes, really) | Social Media Strategy for the Journalism Business by Kim Wilson on February 9th, 2011 9:23 AM

    [...] - They Got More Fans, Fast: UFC gained more than 60,000 Facebook Fans during the one-night event. 2 – They Increased User Engagement: In addition to the live [...]

  11. Highlights of the UFC's social media and digital marketing on May 30th, 2013 6:15 AM

    [...] their international presence and demand by being the first organisation to live stream free “prelim fights” on their Facebook fan page through a ‘like’, in hopes that in time it converts into loyalty and [...]

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