The NCAA Basketball Tournament is like no other sporting event. People forsake their duties at work (which costs an estimated $4 billion in lost productivity) to watch live as 64 schools clash for the chance to be crowned champion.

While the teams are battling, brands strive to win over highly attentive consumers during this three-week long event that plays out across devices and channels.

Last year, 4C pitted March Madness advertisers against one another, head-to-head in their own bracket to see who scored the highest performance. After a hard-fought contest, the winner was AT&T, effectively driving the strongest engagement, interaction from March Madness fans, and sentiment across social media.

This year, we’re be doing it again and expanding the competition to include TV ad occurrences from our Teletrax monitoring network, acquired by 4C in July. Brand scoring will take into account social performance per TV ads aired during the tournament. The key social metrics from Facebook and Twitter (based on index) and their weights that will go into the final score are:

  • 32.5% Total Social Engagements (how many people interacted with the brand on social media)
  • 32.5% PPM Index for March Madness (how many people interacted with the brand and also NCAA Tournament content on social media)
  • 25% Engagement Lift (how much did the brand’s social engagement go up during the tourney)
  • 10% Sentiment (how positive were the posts about each brand)

Among the March Madness advertisers, 16 will be selected for the bracket over the first weekend during the rounds of 64 and 32 with each subsequent round of the NCAA tournament corresponding to a round in March Madness.

Throughout the tourney, we will recap the which games drove the most conversation on social and the advertisers who had prime placement during the most dramatic games.

Good luck to all the competitors and may the best brand win!