Top takeaways for brands from the #Paralympics conversation on Twitter

Here’s what the conversation tells us about fan engagement.

The Paralympics, which ran from Aug. 24 through Sept. 5 in Tokyo, has wrapped. Much like they did for the recent Summer 2020 Olympics, fans from across the globe took to Twitter to cheer for thrilling victories, engage with athletes, watch highlights from official broadcasters, and share in the live experience. The roar of the crowd has never been louder. Here are some of the most noteworthy moments that emerged from the #Paralympics conversation, how fans experienced the events on Twitter, and how brands joined in on the action.

Optimism thrives amongst #Paralympics fans on Twitter.

Coming out of the Paralympics, Twitter research shows that people on Twitter have strong opinions about the event.1

  • 82% agree the Paralympics deserve more attention and coverage than they receive.

  • 72% agree that the Paralympic Games transcend global politics.

  • 78% agree that the Paralympics gives them hope for the future.

The numbers don’t lie. With optimism enveloping the Paralympics conversation on Twitter, brands had a prime opportunity to join in and meet the moment where fans already were.

The roar of the crowd shown by the numbers.

Looking back at the Paralympics in its entirety, it’s clear that the competition had people (and brands) talking. Here’s a breakdown of some of the top ways brands and fans connected with the event in front of a captive audience on Twitter.

  • The #Paralympics audience on Twitter spans far and wide.

During the event, there were 2.4B impressions for Paralympic conversations on Twitter since Aug. 24.2

Athletes and brand allies joined in on the conversation.

Brands and athletes teamed up to engage with their captive audience, like @Toyota, who — leading up to the Summer Games — hosted a Twitter chat with Paralympic champion swimmer, @JessicaLong. The event gave fans the chance to ask questions and become a direct part of the conversation, using the hashtags #AskJessicaLong and #LetsGoPlaces.

Custom Branded Hashtags were everything. 

While the events unfolded, fans across the world were able to join in live and cheer for their favorite teams and athletes on Twitter. This presented brands with an opportunity to meaningfully lean into the moment and show up for the community of fans engaged in real time Paralympics conversations on the platform. 

During the competition, fans worldwide had the chance to unlock the official Paralympics emoji by Tweeting with #Paralympics. Similar to the #Tokyo2020 Olympics, Twitter was also home to a series of Branded Hashtags for sports and for medals that unlocked when people Tweeted about a particular sport, or used the #Gold, #Silver, or #Bronze Hashtags. Fans could also cheer on their country using three-character country hashtags that unlocked a flag emoji of each nation. By using these custom Twitter hashtags as a vehicle for connecting to the Paralympics conversation, brands had the chance to engage with fans and encourage conversation on the platform.

A chance for brands to lean into inclusive marketing

As awareness around disability inclusion continues to evolve, the conversations happening on Twitter can be helpful for brands determining how to connect with their audiences in a meaningful and authentic way. For marketers, the #Paralympics conversation on Twitter presents a valuable opportunity to learn about how to represent those with disabilities more genuinely.

Events that play out on a global stage usually lend themselves to conversation, teamwork, and learning something new. This year’s Paralympic Games were no different. Athletes, brand sponsors, and fans who brought their A-game made this year’s Games one for the books. 
If you’re interested in learning more about the ways that brands can incorporate accessibility into marketing campaigns more intentionally, check out our guide to integrating disability inclusion in marketing campaigns. We’ll see you at the next Paralympic Games!

1: Tokyo 2020 Twitter Insights study conducted by Sparkler and commissioned by Twitter, Nov. 2019, USA, “To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements about the Summer Paralympic Games?” - 1820 monthly Twitter users surveyed
2: Twitter Internal Data - Semantic Core/KGO, Global Paralympic conversation - Aug 24-Sep 05, 2021

September 09, 2021
  • Sports
  • Sports on Twitter
  • The Big Games
  • Research
  • North America

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