All –Star games are like nothing else in sports. Typically, the best athletes are dispersed across teams throughout the league. But, once a year the most skilled players gather to battle against the best.

In the MLB, the All-Star Game decides which team will receive home-field advantage in the playoffs. That’s important considering the team with home field advantage has been crowned the World Series champion 9 of the last 13 years.

High stakes and the chance to witness the best against the best is a huge draw for people and brands. These shared media experiences provide marketers the opportunity to take advantage of conversation-generating moments with highly attentive audiences.

Social media is the forum for conversation during these moments, making it an exceptional environment for capturing consumer insights.

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The All-Star Game started off hot with all six runs being batted in during the first four innings. Except for when Eric Hosmer was named the MVP after the game, most of the engagement was generated during the early innings.

Viewers reacted when Salvador Perez fouled a ball off his leg and subsequently hit a two-run homer. The moment immediately generated 24,000 social engagements and dropped sentiment to 63% as people reacted worriedly.

David Ortiz’ send-off during the third inning made the highlight reel – it was the most rebroadcast moment from the game.

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Several brands also stood out during the event. Official MLB sponsor MasterCard was the top TV advertiser which helped the financial services company earn a 945% engagement lift, 1,163 social index, and 96% positive sentiment.

Chevrolet, who had the second-most TV ad time and awarded MVP Eric Hosmer his choice between a Colorado Diesel and Camaro SS Convertible after the game, benefited from its All-Star Game sponsorship. The carmaker achieved 27,996 social engagements, up 1,324% from its baseline, and 1,325 social index.

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The vast number of engagements on social media provides useful insight into a group of people’s interests. 4C Affinities reveal the top brands for people who engage with MLB are Quicken Loans, Esurance, EA Sports, Bank of America, and T-Mobile. Except for EA Sports, all are official sponsors demonstrating brands are gaining value from their MLB partnerships.

To be an All-Star, brands must be effective at connecting with their consumers. As the digital gathering place for conversation, social media is the MVP for analytics and activation.