SBD/May 12, 2011/Media

UFC Offers Bonuses For Fighters With Large Twitter Followings, Creative Tweets

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The UFC will be paying up to $240,000 a year for its fighters' Twitter usage
UFC President Dana White this week at the UFC Fighter Summit in Las Vegas announced that “fighters will receive bonuses for adding Twitter followers and writing creative tweets,” according to a UFC official cited by Ariel Helwani of MMAFIGHTING.com. UFC and Strikeforce fighters starting June 1 “will be divided into four categories, based on how many Twitter followers they currently have.” At the end of each quarter, three fighters from each category “will be awarded a $5,000 bonus.” The three winners will be “based on who has gained the most followers since the start of the quarter, who gained the highest percentage of new followers and who wrote the most creative tweets.” White “will be the judge of the last category.” UFC at the conclusion of a full calendar year “will end up paying $240,000 a year to its fighters for their Twitter usage” (MMAFIGHTING.com, 5/11). In Houston, Jeremy Botter wrote the initiative is a “bold new step, and a complete change of course from other sporting organizations." Botter: "Only time will tell if it’s effective, but it’s an interesting step from an organization who has embraced social media like no other” (CHRON.com, 5/11).

BIRDIES ON THE GOLF COURSE: In Dallas, Bill Nichols notes the PGA Tour Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial “is going all social media on us,” as next week's tournament “will be awash in mobile devices.” Ft. Worth-based agency Warren Douglas has been “enlisted to ‘manage the social media,’ as if that’s possible.” Twitterers will “receive up-to-the-minute updates, consumer offers from tournament sponsors, and Twitter feeds of players.” Twitter tickers “will flash updates on five digital boards on the course, and on two at Sundance Square in downtown Fort Worth.” TCU marketing majors “will serve as volunteer Tweet Caddies,” and they will be “stationed at the main gate, the clubhouse and at holes 1, 3 and 9” (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 5/12).
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