This summer, PaceUp began working with Global 6 Cycling, a European based-New Zealand registered, UCI Continental Cycling Team providing talented riders from diverse origins and backgrounds an equal chance to ride in the professional cycling peloton. Despite only being a registered team since January 2021, they received an invitation to ride the 17th edition of The Tour of Britain (a 1300km, 8 stage race from Penzance in Cornwall, to Aberdeen in Scotland), taking place in September.
With our combined events, social media and communications experience from both within the WorldTour and on some of the largest sporting events in the world, we put together a comprehensive plan to ensure that this extraordinary team could make the most of their invitation both on the road and online.
The brief covered three key objectives:
PaceUp joined the Global 6 Cycling team remotely for the Tour of Norway in August to get up to speed with the team, understand their way of working and to start to build momentum on social media in the lead up to the Tour of Britain. We provided remote race coverage on Twitter, and covered Instagram and Facebook with pre- and post-race reports for each stage, communicating with the team on the ground regularly to gather content.
After the Tour of Norway, we got to work on briefing the UK Cycling press and commentary teams at ITV and Eurosport/GCN on Global 6 Cycling’s story ahead of the Tour of Britain. The team has a strong mission statement; “where you start shouldn’t decide where you finish”. To emphasise this messaging we supported them in their activation with the charity Refugee Action, with the riders using green front wheels to create a talking point, and therefore raise awareness of the charity’s important work. A set of these wheels would also be donated to Refugee Action to auction post-race to raise funds.
We also assisted with the build of a landing page for the team to ensure that they had an online presence somewhere other than their social media profiles, should anyone search for more information during the race.
PaceUp Media joined Global 6 at the race, gathering content, managing the team’s social media channels and liaising with sponsors, journalists and SweetSpot’s media team. For the stages that data signal was poor, Twitter was covered remotely to ensure that race coverage was uninterrupted.
Our relationships with the race’s commentators allowed us to brief them with information about the team in advance which proved invaluable as the Global6 riders gave them plenty to talk about. Putting in solid performances and managing to get into the breakaway on 3 stages. Nicolas Sessler strongly contested the King of the Mountains jersey, making himself lots of fans in the process with his on-bike antics, and Michal Paluta navigating several tricky sprint finishes with multiple top 20 results and an impressive top 10 to his name.
For the second half of the week, we worked hard to maximise the attention the team was now receiving due to their excellent performance, including taking over leading cycling retailer and Pinarello dealer Sigma Sports’ Instagram stories, interviews with the race media team, local news coverage, articles in a number of publications and news outlets, including Cyclist Magazine and ProCycling Magazine, coverage in the ITV4 Tour of Britain highlights show and interviews with QuickLinks Podcast and other local news channels.
Over and above the racing we supported a campaign to activate a new partnership with Refugee Action, a charity chosen by the team to support. With a very short turnaround time we created a social campaign to highlight the charity through custom wheels with bright green decals representing the charities lead colour. A set of these wheels were auctioned off post the Tour of Britain.
Global 6 Cycling’s plucky performances, and determination to enjoy both races made our job easy. The content we produced was fun and engaging, giving their audience a real insight into why the team’s ethos and values set them apart from other professional cycling teams. They saw a significant increase in the size of their audience and rate of engagement across all social media platforms over the two months.
Providing remote race coverage during the Tour of Norway, we increased impressions by 116%, reach by 25% and achieved an engagement rate of 94%.
At the Tour of Britain, Impressions once again increased by 240% (vs Tour of Norway), total reach by 341% and engagement by 284%, giving an engagement rate of 314% for the 8 days.
The largest period of growth occurred during the Tour of Britain due to the high profile of the race, the preparation of the press and commentary teams and the ability to produce relevant content on-site as the week went on, allowing a full insight into the team from before, during and after the race.
After the Tour of Britain, we provided a full, detailed breakdown of the coverage and social media analytics across both races, including insights into the audience of each platform and best performing content to be shared with current and potential sponsors. We also banked all content from both races to be used by the team during the offseason.
We have proven experience in helping teams and sponsors make the most of their investments across every level of professional racing all the way up to the UCI World Tour. If you want to hear more about how we can help your team or brand take advantage of its time in the spotlight we would love to chat. Email [email protected] or call +44 7761 537 175.