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Interactive Annual 17:

UFC 116: Lesnar vs Carwin

Launch Live Site

“I’m a sucker for infographic design and this site is flawless in its look, style and motion.” —Adrian Belina

“Rich, entertaining information visualization. Sleek, minimal UI. Beautiful take on the classic “tale of the tape” fighter comparison.” —Jill Nussbaum

Overview: This was the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s largest (literally) event to date. The real-life clash of the titans was a match-up between heavyweight champions Brock Lesnar and Shane Carwin (who both weigh in at the weight class limit of 265 pounds) and was one of the most anticipated fights in UFC history. The site generated excitement, and enticed fans to purchase the event on Pay-Per-View, by allowing visitors to log-in through Facebook and Twitter to create custom avatars and make predictions about who would win the main event. Once submitted, the avatars and predictions were aggregated into an interactive visual lineup giving visitors the ability to browse predictions, rate and sort them, and get a tally of votes.

  • • Visitors can use the mouse wheel, keyboard arrows or click-and drag-content to navigate the site.
  • • Each prediction pushed a post out to Twitter or Facebook inviting a user’s friends to see them in the lineup; by the time the event took place on July 3, over 34,000 users had added themselves to the lineup.
  • • The social media activity from the site contributed to over two million UFC Twitter mentions and a UFC Facebook mention every six seconds in the week leading up to the event.

Comments by RED Interactive Agency

What was the most challenging aspect of the project? “We didn’t know how many people might interact with the site during its relatively short lifespan, so we had to create an experience that could theoretically accommodate anywhere from a few thousand people to an infinite number. It had to be a functional and engaging experience no matter how many people posted predictions or interacted with the lineup.”

Did you learn anything new during the process? “One thing that surprised us was how few of the user-generated comments needed to be moderated. The experience was engaging and appealed to the target user and, more importantly, each user’s comments/predictions were tied to their actual Facebook or Twitter account, which made them more accountable for their contributions.”

What was the response? “There was a tremendous response from the user base. Approximately 35,000 predictions were made in the month leading up to the event, all of which were automatically posted to and shared across the primary social networks. This activity provided an exponential benefit to the UFC and helped the site go viral, which helped make it one of the UFC’s most successful Pay-Per-View events in its history.”


RED Interactive Agency (Santa Monica, CA), project design and development
UFC, client

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