ABOUT THIS ENTRY
Ahead of the 2022 NBA Japan Games, the Golden State Warriors identified an opportunity to grow the sport of basketball by launching native Japanese social media channels. Together with the domestic social media channels, the Warriors social media team delivered social storylines in multiple languages, meeting fans where they are.
How does this represent “Excellence in Engagement”?
The Warriors capitalized on fan and player excitement leading up to the team’s trip to Japan as well as the team’s presence in Japan to create content that engaged an international audience thousands of miles away from their home court. Players’ involvement with local culture and interactions with international fans and influencers generated top engaging content while showing appreciation for the fanbase and its culture.
The creation and development of the Warriors' Japanese social media channels also testified to the team’s dedication to using their influence and platforms to bridge different cultures and help grow the game of basketball internationally.
Ahead of the Warriors’ two global games in Japan, the team identified a unique opportunity to show appreciation to the country and the team’s international fanbase and engage them on an unprecedented level with new Japanese channels featuring captivating content.
Before the team’s journey to Japan, the Warriors launched Japanese Instagram and Twitter accounts to deliver in-language content in an effort to generate excitement for the trip.
Throughout the team’s time in Japan, a wide-ranging coverage plan was created not only to highlight Warriors basketball, but also the large local fanbase and players’ involvement with local culture. From Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins’ visit to a hedgehog cafe to Klay Thompon’s day of exploration in Shibuya, Warriors social sought to give fans a unique look inside the Golden State Warriors' trip to Japan.
The team also partnered with global superstars SUGA from BTS and YUTA from NCT as well as local influencers to produce relevant and relatable content.
Strategy & Execution
Prior to the trip, the Golden State Warriors produced a four-episode video series featuring Japanese K-pop star YUTA and Warriors players Stephen Curry, Klay Thomson, and James Wiseman. Throughout the video series, YUTA shared his favorite places to visit in Tokyo and taught the players essential Japanese phrases.
While the team was in Japan, the Warriors’ content team was there to document every moment including content from player interactions with fans, a sumo wrestling experience, a Tokyo Tower visit, Shibuya shopping trips and a hedgehog café adventure. In addition, a meet-and-greet was arranged for Stephen Curry and SUGA at practice. Their interaction went viral on social media and was quickly picked up by numerous media outlets around the world.
The Warriors’ collaborations with local Japanese influencers (Sumipon, Miyavi, Atarashii Gakko, Hakuho, Kazuki, Sway and Hiroshi Tamura) also helped the team reach a broader local audience and diversify content offering.
Through it all, Warriors’ domestic channels worked hand in hand with the Japan Instagram and Twitter accounts to amplify these moments while also posting natively throughout the entire trip.