Track ahead of the competition – who will make it to finish line?

July 31, 2012 by Experian Marketing Services

It’s Olympics time – the once-every-four-year period where all of the preparation and hype give way to the actual events.  Whether you’re an athlete or a marketer, preparation and knowing your competition gives you an edge in the game.  This got us thinking about what sports are winning the online medals in attracting fans to their respective websites.  So, we analyzed the visitors to the top US sports official team sites –USA Track and Field (usatf.org), USA Swimming (usaswimming.org), and USA Basketball (usabasketball.com). We found  spikes in traffic and interest over the past few weeks as the Olympics momentum picked up speed.

USA Track & Field took the gold in consumer interest with the highest visits from June 21st to July 1st, when qualifying trials were held. USA Swimming took silver , as their trials were held at the same time.  The peak in traffic was during the week ending 6/30, when most of the finals and interesting competitions occurred. Traffic to USA Basketball is still rising. Though the team did not have official trials, it held exhibition games against other nations’ teams.

Source: Experian Hitwise

Where else do the fans spend their time online?

Although the USA Track & Field site clocked the most visitors during trials – the USA Swimming site  visitors are more enthusiasts of the sport. Four of the top ten downstream sites from the Olympic swimming site were related to the sport.  After visiting USA Swimming, fans went to the Omega Timing site, the official timekeeper of the Olympic games. The site hosted live timing and the results of the trials. And, one-third of the traffic to Omega’s site was new visitors; a big win for Omega. With a spike in traffic of 57% along with 49% new visitors during the final week of trials, their sponsorship of the games is successfully working as an acquisition channel.  Additionally, there was interest in the USA Gymnastics site as visitors jumped over to this site from the swimming site and about one-third of those visitors were new to the gymnastics site.

Source: Experian Hitwise

The USA Track & Field visitors most often went to search engines and social media sites after the site, with only a few sites related to the sport.

USA Basketball visitors went to a variety sites including, ESPN, Netflix and Culver’s fast food restaurant. Leveraging the sites visited after your site to find sites and products where your audience has an affinity helps to develop a more targeted marketing campaign.

Successful marketers are like Olympic athletes – it takes focus, preparation and knowing your competition to win.  By knowing the interests and site behavior of your customers and having insights into the campaigns of your competitors – you can win the competition in your industry.  Timely, accurate data is invaluable to ensure you can react to changing behaviors and emerging trends in your industry. Hold on to your gold or break out from silver by staying ahead of the competiton and in front of your best customers and prospects.