The French Open: Stars, Serves & Social at Roland Garros

The second Grand Slam of the year has come and gone, and this year’s French Open had some of the biggest names in tennis fighting it out on the clay at Roland Garros. Over the course of two weeks, both the men’s and women’s tournaments had everything – beautiful surroundings, exciting matches, young talent, famous veterans, tough losses, big wins and, in the end, two deserving champions.  

French Open Social Overview

Twitter Conversation Around The French Open

An incredible event set in the beautiful city of Paris, Roland-Garros created plenty of social chatter this year. During the tournament, over 678K Tweets about the French Open generated over 2.7 billion impressions. Compared to last year, that’s roughly 1.8x more Tweets and over 2x more impressions.

PostsImpressionsEngagementsEngagement RateSocial Value
Tweets mentioning “Roland Garros,” “Roland-Garros,” “French Open,” #FrenchOpen, #RolandGarros, @rolandgarros 5/22/22 12AM – 6/6/22 12PM ET

Many of the biggest earned Tweets were media outlets like ESPN covering the tournament, and other top posts came from celebrities praising players and congratulating Rafael Nadal on his 14th French Open title. 

Tracking the activity over time, there were three clear spikes in Twitter activity as matches played out at Roland Garros.

The first was Tuesday, May 31st for the blockbuster match between now 22-time major champion Rafael Nadal and 20-time major champion Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals. Americans Coco Gauff and Sloane Stephens also faced off in the women’s tournament that day.  

Friday, June 3rd activity rose again for the men’s semifinals, although not to the levels it was for Djokovic-Nadal. World No. 3 Alexander Zverev unfortunately left what was shaping up to be an incredible match against Nadal with an injury during the second set.  

Of course on Sunday activity was at its highest as the King of Clay struck again. Social media was buzzing as Nadal took home his 22nd major win and 14th win at Roland-Garros.  

Roland-Garros’ Owned Social Serves An Ace

Kudos to the Roland Garros social accounts for beautifully covering two weeks of tennis. Over the course of the tournament they generated 669 million impressions from their accounts alone. With hundreds of matches, there was plenty of opportunity for content, and they amassed 14.8M+ engagements and $23M+ in social value over the course of 15 days.  

PostsImpressionsEngagementsEngagement RateSocial ValueVideo Views
Roland Garros owned social (TW, IG, FB) 5/22/22 12AM – 6/6/22 12PM ET

Their most popular posts were announcements of big wins, both for underdogs and tennis’ best players as they progressed through the tournament.  

With Nadal’s historic 14th win, they generated their most engagement by far on Sunday. Their biggest post of the entire tournament featured Rafa then and now, bringing in over 619K+ engagements on Instagram.

As far as partners go, Roland Garros did a branded content series with smart device company Oppo highlighting the “Shot of the Day” over the course of the event. Cross-platform, this content series had 49 posts with more than 174K engagements and $334K in social value.  

King of Clay, King of Social 

With a decades long career Rafael Nadal already has a massive global fanbase who were happy to celebrate with him on social media as he brought home his 14th Coupe des Mousquetaires.

On his own social media accounts, Nadal created 6.1M+ engagements over just eleven posts. His posts after winning the French Open helped boost those numbers, but his top post actually came after beating longtime competitor Djokovic and earned a whopping $1.3M+ in social value.  

Throughout his content several of Nadal’s big partners were on full display. Along with his own branded logo, the Nike swoosh was all over his apparel. Plus, Nadal notably wore a Richard Mille timepiece throughout the tournament, featured in his content and posts that included pictures of him.  

Besides his own social content doing big numbers, over the course of the tournament Tweets about Nadal totaled over 503K and brought in more than 1.35 billion impressions. Fans, celebrities, media and Roland Garros closely covered his 22nd Grand Slam title run.

Young Stars Shine in Women’s Tournament

Coco Serving Content

American Coco Gauff has quickly become a fan favorite since her WTA Tour debut in 2019, and at just 18 years old she made her first singles Grand Slam finals at this year’s French Open.  

Gauff just so happened to graduate high school while in Paris too, posting herself in cap and gown in front of the Eiffel Tower the day before the French Open began. This was her top post of the tournament. Check out the New Balances, one of Gauff’s major partners.  

Gauff took to Twitter throughout the tournament to share her excitement as she advanced to finals for singles and doubles. Her Twitter alone brought in 10.7 million impressions throughout her time in Paris.

Besides her graduation pic, she only posted one more grid post on Instagram, recapping her time at Roland Garros with grace and gratitude. It was her biggest post of the tournament, engagements-wise, bringing in 125K+ likes/comments.

In total, she earned more than 500K engagements and $678K in social value on her owned social accounts, but her incredible run in Paris picked up traction off her personal socials as well. In total, there were over 47K tweets about Gauff throughout Roland Garros, generating over 207 million impressions. Additionally, the women’s finals on Saturday between Coco Gauff and No.1 ranked Iga Swiatek had the 4th most Twitter activity of any day of the tournament.  

Iga’s Brand Continues to Boom 

With her SIXTH straight tournament win, and the first Grand Slam in that streak, WTA No. 1 Iga Swiatek has been on fire! As she continues to dominate on court, more and more fans are following her off the court. Her Instagram following has grown 72% since March 1st, right around the time she began this title-run. 

As the projected tournament winner, the tennis world heavily discussed Swiatek on Twitter as she progressed through the French Open. Similar to Gauff, she had over 47K tweets about her, with more engagement after she took home the win, but slightly less earned impressions.  

During this tournament, she updated her quickly growing fan base along the way, creating lots of engagement on her Instagram in particular. Her top post was celebrating her first major win of the year with the Suzanne-Lenglen cup in front of the Eiffel Tower, bringing in 388K+ engagements and $376K+ in social value.  

This year’s French Open was the perfect combination of storylines and star-power, compelling fans to tune in via social and generate billions of impressions and millions of engagements around the event. It will be interesting to see if tennis continues this momentum into Wimbledon, slated to start later this June.