Journal

Why International Performance Is Important

It's all about the World Cup

We’re coming up to World Cup 2018 in Russia, so brands and sponsors will be looking to ensure that they are front of mind, and will be hoping that their players are going to provide them with extra exposure during the tournament. Alexis Sánchez, as one of the best players in the Premier League over the last couple of years, has about 17m social media fans. That doesn’t approach the top 10 in terms of pure social following which is populated by the likes of Mesut Özil (70m) or David Luiz (50m) but it is almost double the number of fans who follow his team mate Marouane Fellaini. You’d therefore expect Sanchez to offer more to sponsors than Fellaini. But we currently rate Fellaini as more influential than Sánchez. Why is that? Our goal at Sportstar Influencer is to ensure that we understand who has the great marketing value. We do this via our algorithm that looks at all aspects of a player’s career, social following and the sentiment around them. The World Cup is a prime example of this value – players and teams are being broadcast around the world to audiences that number in the billions. It’s a chance to shine, to increase their worth, to prove that they are the best. The problem for Sanchez is that Chile won’t be in Russia for the World Cup, and Sanchez will be staying at home, whilst Belgium are seeded and expected to progress to at least the last four. That’s a lot more exposure for the Belgian players and, as the tournament takes place, we expect to see even more of an impact – as teams drop out, we’ll see their players drop in the rankings, and other rise higher. You can expect to see some real volatility in our Premier League rankings as we reach the end of the group stage at the end of June. Even better for Fellaini is the chance that he’ll individually do well, and raise his value in that way. If you have fans talking and posting about you on social platforms like Twitter and Instagram and the sentiment is positive, then his value will only go up and we may seem him rise even further above Sanchez by the end of the tournament. Alexis worked hard to try to get Chile to the World Cup. The tournament itself will be poorer from not having him there. A lack of sponsorship opportunities off the back of this means Sanchez will probably be in the same situation.