All Blacks Sevens and GoldCoast7s get social

IRB and James Mortimer     23 Oct 2013     IRB

Truer words could never be spoken as the new HSBC Sevens World Series got underway.

The notoriously loud Kenyan fans were in high spirits, former teammates and female counterparts shared in the All Blacks Sevens (@nz7s) win, Wallaby Digby Ioane (@digbyioane) praised the tournament and Nathan Hirayama (@nhirayama10) received countless messages of well-wishing following his injury.

And that was just on social networking sites…

This year, all nine rounds of the Series will be streamed live on and not far short of 100,000 took to the website to watch the season get underway.

When a match is on TV, or being watched online, there’s an amazing statistic that 83% of people also check in via social media. With the Sevens broadcast reaching well over 100 countries, the live stream now rounds off that circle and allows everyone else to watch, wherever they are in the world.

Of course, there was some geo-blocking in certain countries, for example the USA, which we understand can be frustrating, but that is in place to protect the broadcaster’s rights.

Anyway, with the event all of a sudden so accessible, it was no wonder that #GoldCoast7s trended worldwide several times over the weekend. At one stage it was the third-most popular topic on twitter – and in the middle of a Formula 1 race!

Amongst all of the excitement surrounding the opening round in Australia, you, the fans, were very much at the heart of it.

The fans chose the first IRB Sevens Dream Team of the season, and although there should be worthy mentions for John Moonlight, James Rodwell and Tom Mitchell, we think you got it spot on.

Fans also voted for Collins Injera’s try against Tonga as their favourite from the weekend. Perhaps you were just giving the player who became the fourth all-time leading try scorer over the weekend an early birthday present?

Last year, a Portuguese newspaper ran a feature on Pedro Leal’s ‘fans’ favourite try’ of the season. Who knows where this year’s will end up…

Throughout the weekend, 52% of visits to came through a mobile device, higher than any round last year, and that leaves us with the task of ensuring that audience is catered for properly.

We have more of the same up our sleeve for Dubai, and Twitter Q&As with some of the top teams, so stay tuned and keep sharing your thoughts. We really are listening.