According to recently conducted studies, results have shown that perhaps Twitter could be a better predictor of sports results than the odds of bookmakers. This is because of a phenomenon known to be the ‘wisdom of the crowds’ effect.
According to an article published in the Economic Enquiry, it has been found that due to the public sentiment expressed during a game on Twitter, the results of the predictions have astounding accuracy.
Twitter and Sports Betting Studies
Researchers at the UK’s University of East Anglia (UEA) have made use of a multitude of computer programs, which they used to analysed a whopping 13.8 million Tweets. They have done this analysis at a crazy speed of around 5.2 Tweets per second within the English Premier League season that took place in 2013 and 2014. They then took their analysis and compared it to the results achieved through Betfair’s in-play bets.
So, what were their findings? Well, the researchers noted that the Tweets analysed all had a resounding positive tone associated to a specific team. Generally, the team that had positive Tweets about them actually had a greater chance of winning than what was suggested by betting odds.
Twitter, a Look at the Numbers
So, do these findings actually have an effect on sports betting. Why not see for yourself? According to the numbers produced, it is seen that a return on investment on a sample of 900,000 bets sits at 2.28%. According to the UEA mathematicians, this success rate is considered to be quite surprising. Reason being is, when compared to the average loss of approximately 5.41% across the same matches on all Betfair wagers, the 2.28% could have enough clout to put these sports books out of business.
Studies show that not only can social media be used for the accurately forecasting sports betting results, but it can be used in other things too. An example of future stock return predictions was provided. The tone of Twitter is even used by studios in Hollywood to predict the demand for new movies. Dr James Reade, a co-author and sports economist at the University of Reading, expresses that when analysing the ‘wisdom of crowds’ it is imperative that you listen to the right parts of the crowd. By doing this, we can confirm that based on the information provided, the predictions will be far more accurate.