Dunks. Clutch baskets. Explosions. Name it and you’ve seen it in UAAP Season 82.

The UAAP, which fans follow on S+A, LIGA, sports.abs-cbn.com, and iWant, delivers action, captivates Filipinos, and generates international buzz.

While the UAAP has always been trending on social media, this season is shaping up to be special in terms of online engagement across all ABS-CBN Sports social media platforms.

On the ABS-CBN Sports Facebook page (1.3M followers), UAAP-related posts from August 26 to September 16 generated a total of 168 million impressions and 1.5 million interactions. Engagement was especially high on September 4 during the UP-FEU game. In this game, UP Fighting Maroon Ricci Rivero announced his return to the UAAP with a ridiculous alley-oop dunk that went viral, bringing in 7.8 million views and almost 400,000 interactions to the page.

Rivero’s highlight did not just end up on the Facebook timelines and news feeds of Filipino basketball fans, as global sports media outlets like Bleacher Report, Yahoo Sports, and Ballislife shared ABS-CBN Sports’ video of the dunk for the whole world to see.

Other UAAP first round highlights featuring UP’s Kobe Paras, UST’s Rhenz Abando, and DLSU’s Jamie Malonzo also generated millions of views and thousands of comments on Facebook with fans praising the athleticism of players and the intensity of action early in the season.

“UAAP fans enjoy watching highlights for two reasons,” veteran sports anchor Mico Halili, who also serves as ABS-CBN Sports’ digital head, says. “They watched the game and want to relive and share the exciting moment with friends, or they missed the game and want to catch up on what everyone on social is talking about. We’re here to give UAAP fans what they want on digital.”

It’s the same story on ABS-CBN Sports Twitter (1.3M followers) where fans get real-time updates and highlights of the games. Twitter engagement shot up to never before seen levels for UAAP-related posts. Within August 28 to September 24 this year, there have been 77.4 million impressions and 1.93 million profile visits recorded on the platform.

ABS-CBN Sports Instagram account also experienced a surge with its followers and engagement growing at a faster pace. Users are drawn to click and watch highlight videos on the account with poster-like thumbnails featuring UAAP stars. UAAP athletes themselves like and share the content on the platform, which now has 170k followers.

While most of the credit rightfully goes to awesome play of all eight teams in the UAAP,  the enhanced quality of the content created by the ABS-CBN Sports Digital team also helps fuel social media engagement.

Beyond the highlights, the digital team also serves fans with original content that makes the UAAP experience even more engaging online. Leading to the opening of UAAP Season 82, the ABS-CBN Sports Digital team launched several originals to put fans in UAAP mode: “MIXTAPE” featured memorable moments from UAAP Season 81 and “#KillerCrossover” allowed UAAP stars to share their passions outside of basketball.

During the first round of UAAP Season 82, fans on ABS-CBN Sports social media platforms watched and shared digital features on breakout games by Rey Suerte of UE, Val Chauca of Adamson, and Dave Ildefonso of NU and thrilling games like the Ateneo-UST first round showdown.

Halili reveals that there is both art and science behind the UAAP engagement generated by ABS-CBN Sports on social media.

“The main ingredient is capturing fun, dramatic and exciting moments from the games,” he shared. “Guided by our love for sports, the data provided by our analytics team, and our mission to serve the fan, we choose what storylines to focus on and decide how to share these stories in the best way. When we select highlights or write captions, the key for ABS-CBN Sports is to know what UAAP fans want.”

ABS-CBN Sports is the sports arm of the country’s leading media and entertainment organization, which is rapidly transitioning into an agile digital company with the biggest online presence among local media networks and a growing list of digital platforms.

Meanwhile, UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball enters the second round on October 5. Fans can watch the games live on ABS-CBN S+A on free TV, on LIGA on cable, and online via iWant or sports.abs-cbn.com. Enjoy more of the UAAP experience by following @ABSCBNSports on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube, or by visiting sports.abs-cbn.com.

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Push Awards' Most Popular Entertainment Blogger of 2016, Rod Magaru is a celebrity Blogger who blogs about lifestyle and Entertainment. His Blog is known for breaking news on new projects in TV, Movies and reviews of products, hotels and awesome travel tips. He is also a Social media strategist, accepts hosting & speaking engagement. For inquiries email [email protected]