Leverage your sports organisation to the next level with live video content
The rise of the online sports fan, social as the new channel of broadcast, digital democratising sports viewership – these are all things having a major impact on the sports industry.
Yet, at times, it might appear that only the major sports industry players are reaping the benefits of these seismic shifts towards digital channels. But, hang on…. smaller organisations can grow rapidly too and are often the ones carving the way and their own niches as they go. This is all thanks to new, mostly internet-based technology – such as cloud-based live stream production, and social video editing and distribution platforms – which are reducing the gap between the biggest clubs or federations and smaller organisations.
At the heart is the not-so-secret-anymore weapon – live video content.
Why live video content?
Put simply, consumption of video content is constantly growing, and rapidly so amongst sport fans.
For younger generations, digitally served video content plays an even bigger role than TV played for their parents. Generations of ‘cord-cutters’ are not so interested in having a traditional TV set with a cable subscription. The evidence points to how they prefer to spend time watching subscription based (or free) online OTTs. Millennials and Generation Z folks have moved their parents’ affection for TV, to the web.
However, the choice between either a traditional TV or an online service is not only a matter of age of viewers: 
Online viewers also consider online video to be more exciting, as well being mobility-friendly and a better choice when it comes to multitasking as you watch. Sounds about right!
But if you work in traditional TV, don’t worry, it isn’t going to simply disappear. While it has some very big competition in the form of web OTTs, it’s still king of the hill and will remain in this position for some time yet.
Sharing is caring
When live video and sports combined, what we’re all seeing now is sports brands becoming content companies. But what do I mean by this? Different kinds of sport bodies – clubs, federations, leagues etc – are producing tons of content and sharing this with fans.
The biggest players, like Spanish or English football leagues, might well be selling broadcasting rights to the top TV stations and TV producers. But in order to keep their fans motivated and committed, they also create and share a lot of other stuff that’s not usually televised via traditional TV. See the Tellyo blog on the best examples of such content: Ideas for online video content when you can’t show games.
- Press conferences
- Injury updates
- Other teams’ matches
- Stadium tours
- Pre-season games etc.
Elsewhere, the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) is planning to open their own OTT platform with live video content to complement paid TV. While UEFA is certainly a big fish, they do have lots of events that are not as popular as say the Champions League, such as games featuring women teams, pre-season preparations and matches, injury reports, and interviews with players.
There’s a lot of content that is absolutely worthy of spreading beyond UEFA itself. That’s why the organisation’s latest idea is to make more content eligible to be streamed or recorded as a video. And there’s no better way to promote sports events than video:
This situation can be a huge opportunity for many smaller organisation or lesser known parts of sports institutions. What’s more important – they don’t need huge facilities and resources be able to achieve great marketing, PR and sales results with sport video content. How come?
You own content… Make use of it!
Technology makes it all possible. Recording videos and streaming broadcasts to social media, on a professional level, is very obtainable to all. You don’t need a production control room with multiple screens, tons of electronic devices, or a team of engineers. That’s NASA you’re thinking of! Instead, you need video recording device (camera, iPhone, drone), a decent internet connection and laptop to run video production software. Software like Tellyo Pro, for example:
Our Tellyo Pro is a professional cloud-based platform for frequent and regular live content production. It allows you to ingest video streams to Tellyo and broadcast these to RTMP and social channels, while also clipping live content into videos to post on social media.
Stream Studio is our cloud video production suite that enables you to create dynamic live streams for social channels, with extras like graphical and video overlays and sound mixing.
If you’re using Opta Sports event metadata for example, you can now also automate video clip creation in Tellyo Pro with Smart Clips, giving more power to your editors to quickly create video compilations. Our Auto Clip-to-Post feature means you can also fully-automate clip creation through to social messaging and social posting, all in one go.
For more detailed and data-driven stories, check out our case studies section.
To grow or not to grow?
The facts speak for themselves: live video content can be a leverage to promote your organisation, league, club or sport in general. Video content production is no longer exclusively reserved for the TV and sports giants. As long as you own it or have the rights to it, you can use your events as great video content. You will gain new audiences and please your existing fans, so let your sports video content be your ace!
If you would like a demo of any Tellyo solutions mentioned above, please don’t hesitate to contact us – we’re more than happy to help!
Visit our stand at Sportel and try our new solutions
One of the most prestigious events in the sports marketing and media industry, Sportel is the place to meet influential leaders and see cutting-edge technology in action.
At Sportel Monaco we invite you to come by our stand and chat with us about the benefits of using Tellyo in your organisation. We can also show you how our exciting new solutions work.
Visit us at Sportel Monaco on stand A40/A41 between 22 and 24 October. Either send us en email on firstname.lastname@example.org, arrange a meeting beforehand or simply drop by our stand to say hi!
The new solutions you’ll get to meet
Stream Studio is advanced live production tool that enables your digital and social teams to create dynamic live streams for social channels, providing an immersive experience for fans. Request a demo>
Smart Clips equips your teams with an intelligent tool for creating short videos quickly and easily, thanks to event meta data provided by Opta Sports or Genius Sports. Request a demo>
Auto Clip-to-Post fully automates clip creation, social messaging and social posting. Combined with Smart Clips, Auto Clip-to-Post multiplies the matches one editor can effectively cover. Request a demo>
For inspiration, check out this video clip compilation from Guinness PRO14 Rugby – a great example of packaging exciting moments to help shape the tournament’s narrative as the premier professional club competition in Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Wales and South Africa.
The tries just keep coming 👊
Speed, skill, and style aplenty, Round 4 of the #GUINNESSPRO14 certainly didn't disappoint 🔥
Check out the top tries of the weekend 👉 https://t.co/S87eu5A9cQ pic.twitter.com/GlkRnnAEcl
— PRO14 RUGBY (@PRO14Official) September 24, 2018
We look forward to meeting you at Sportel Monaco!
Meet our exciting new solutions, plus our Twitter partnership goes live!
This week we’re launching three exciting new solutions – Stream Studio, Smart Clips and Auto Clip-to-Post – as well as our Pro Media API partnership with Twitter. All will make their first appearances at the IBC Show 2018 in Amsterdam, which we’ll attending from Friday.
What’s the story behind our announcements? Because we’re driven to continuously deliver intelligent technology, our new solutions and Twitter partnership are designed to better enable digital and social teams to build video stories quickly and amplify these across the web, all in a highly managed, monetizable and secure way.
Our new solutions
These include a new product – Stream Studio – and two major feature upgrades in Smart Clips and Auto Clip-to-Post.
Stream Studio is our cloud-based live production suite for creating customised live streams for social channels and audiences. By switching between streams, adding visual layers and distributing to multiple destinations simultaneously, Stream Studio means you can build greater engagement and add value to audiences in real time. Request a demo ›
Smart Clips is an intelligent tool for quickly clipping short videos. Designed to dramatically speed up work flows, it runs alongside human social-video editors and, through metadata, suggests clips and highlights. Editors can then choose to add clips to montages with a single click. Request a demo ›
Auto Clip-to-Post fully automates clip creation, social messaging and social posting. It can run on multiple streams simultaneously and, when combined with Smart Clips, multiplies the events and games one editor can effectively cover. Auto Clip-to-Post is entirely new to the market – a solution capable of pulling event metadata and using it in a unique and clever way to construct clips and social messages, then posting these to social channels. Request a demo ›
Our Twitter Pro Media Partnership
All of the new solutions build upon our firm belief that the best stories are told by humans to humans, which has resulted in us putting considerable energy into empowering digital teams and social video editors, and equipping them with world-class technology solutions.
A clear example is our official Twitter Pro Media partnership, which now provides our existing and future clients with the highest level of video integration on Twitter.
The new partnership adds 20+ new Twitter features, including extended monetisation opportunities such as the Amplify Publisher Program and In-Stream Ads and Sponsorships, as well as enhanced geo-targeting, advanced meta-tagging and simplified publishing workflows.
“I’m delighted to announce the launch of our three new solutions – Stream Studio, Smart Clips and Auto Clip-to-Post – as well as our partnership with Twitter. These new developments will give more power to digital teams, social video editors and creators by delivering greater tools for getting video stories out quickly and more effectively shaping the narrative across online and social media channels. Our Twitter partnership will also enable teams, editors and creators to maximise video story telling on one of the globe’s favourite digital channels.”
The most common live video streaming habits of digital audiences
It’s extremely difficult to pin down live video streaming audiences. Data will vary depending on world regions, such as a country’s internet quality, its level of technology adoption and development, and so on. However, a new report has done an incredible job of helping us to build a better understanding of digital viewers, as much as it’s possible.
The IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) report – Live Video Streaming: A Global Perspective – provides a great benchmark regarding trends across live video streaming. It’s a must read for anyone interested in the broadcasting industry and for people who want to stay up to date with the most recent studies. Here’s a short, but insightful summary of the survey’s results.
Check out our other stories:
- Ideas for online video content when you can’t show games
- Will the real host of the 2022 FIFA World Cup be the web?
- Still looking for a prime alternative to Snappy TV?
An overview of live video streaming consumption
The IAB report highlights that we are all surrounded by devices that enable us to watch video streams – such as PCs, laptops, smartphones, tablets and web connected TVs, all of which are some of the most common screens we use to catch the content we want to see.
The report also makes a strong point that video streaming is still growing rapidly. Forty-seven per cent of people who took part in the IAB survey said that they stream more videos in 2018 than they did a year ago. Russians are a model example of what the report calls the ‘video thirsty user’, as 61% of Russian respondents said they watch more streams now than a year ago.
How we watch content
Out of all of our web-connected devices, smartphones are the most popular when it comes to watching video streams (for 62% of survey respondents). In second place comes the PC/laptop, while tablets come third. The reports notes that the most popular ways to watch video streams is further reflected in the devices people keep at home, as listed below.
“What device I own or have access to”:
However, while we might use smartphones to watch live video content most often, the report concludes that the device is not the best platform for longer formats.
It seems that audiences around the world prefer to watch long formats, or videos for longer periods of time, on bigger screens. The Smart TV comes top with 67% watching more than 30 minutes of live streams daily; while video streaming devices (that are connected to and watched through a TV) follow closely behind on 62%. Only in 47% of cases are smartphones used to watch video for 30 minutes or more.
Audiences prefer to watch longer video content on bigger screens, while smartphones are often used for short videos no longer than 10-30 minutes in length.
Where we consume content
Social media now plays a key role in many areas of life. Unsurprisingly, viewers like to watch live streams mostly on social media (52%), with dedicated, digital streaming platforms with subscriptions coming in second place (41%).
The report highlights that social platforms are a natural place for streaming and probably one of the best places for viewing:
- (Almost) everyone can access social media streams, as long as they have a web connection.
- Social media is free to use.
- Social channels are widely accessible via almost any web-enabled device you can imagine: PCs, smartphones, tablets, Smart TVs, gaming consoles etc.
- Social offers specific features that help broadcasters to promote and inform users about a stream.
- Users also benefit from specific features, such as the ability to chat during a stream.
Digital streaming subscription platforms, like Hulu Live or DirectTV Now, are dedicated to digital entertainment and offer access to multiple TV channels using a connected device. Users can watch anywhere, either live or on-demand at a more convenient time.
Other, popular sources of live video streams are:
- TV network websites or apps (like ITV Hub, All4 or other web services that provide live streams from traditional TV broadcasters) – 34%
- Gaming websites or apps – 33%
- Paid TV service provider website or app – 21%
- Other sources – 9%
Content we like to consume
The most popular type of content that is streamed by digital viewers around the world is the TV series (for 45% of users).
Thirty-one per cent watch live sports, with 30% tuning into how-to tutorials. Gaming fans represent 29% of live video content consumers. What’s interesting is that live videos made by friends or family members are appealing to 28%; while news is interesting for 27%, videos made by an online celebrity or influencer for 24%, live concerts for 23% and talk shows for 22%.
There isn’t anything too surprising about the above types of content we like to consume. For most people, a box-set TV serial is the go-to content across the web in general, including video on-demand (VOD) and live streaming services. Live sports events are then an obvious second, as sport is all about being ‘in the moment’.
Where we consume
Gone are the days of a TV set in every room, probably forever. Live content is now everywhere, across laptops, smartphones and tablets to name just a few. These new screens are often the first thing we look at in the morning and, quite probably, the last thing we look at before going to sleep.
According to the IAB report, 73% of live video content is consumed at home. Outdoor consumption appears to be alongside journeys and social events, like going to a restaurant, bar or the park, or on the way to work and while shopping.
Thirty-seven per cent of viewers spend 81% or more of their time live streaming in the company of others, which increases to 56% of viewers when using a smartphone. This is worth remembering, as it means that up to just over half of your streaming audience will be more than one person, depending on the device being used.
How we multi-task while watching live streams
While watching live streams an audience’s attention is highly distracted. But this doesn’t mean that they don’t pay attention to what they see on the screen. In fact, while they will do other things, these are more often related to what is being watched.
Things (related to what is being watched) that viewers do while watching live content:
Why we watch live streams
So, what exactly does an audience look for in a live stream? The IAB report asked respondents – What are the main reasons for you to watch live video streaming content? – and the responses shed light on why we watch:
Something that should be of valuable insight to many live content industry professionals, the report also asked: Which of the following factors influence your choice of live video streaming sources?
It seems that technical aspects, such as content quality and the speed of connection, are crucial here, while ads (or the absence of ads) in a live stream are not so important after all.
Key takeaways about the live video consumer
Based on the IAB report’s survey results, if we were to create a persona for the ‘live video content consumer’, the following would form their habits and thoughts. They would:
- Watch live video content a couple of times a day
- Own a smartphone and use it to stream live video content
- View streams via social media channels
- Favour TV serials and sports
- Enjoy watching live streams in the late evening – from 8pm to 11pm
- Check social media and look for related online content while watching a stream
- Appreciate content quality and connection speed
- Like how live content makes them feel up to date and well informed
Although the above makes some pretty big generalisations, once you start to glean new insights from reports such as the IAB’s, then you can build a better picture of the live video content consumer. Worth remembering!
Reaching the live video streaming consumer
When it comes to execution of your live video strategy and getting the tools to reach the live video consumer described above, simply try one of our Tellyo solutions. Tellyo Pro is for regular, extensive broadcasts; while Tellyo On Demand is designed for more occasional use. If you’re not sure which solution would suit you, please get in contact and the team here will be more than happy to help.
Will the real host of the 2022 FIFA World Cup be the web?
With massive stadiums, world-wide federations and leagues, and global superstars, Football is undoubtedly the most important sport in the world. Its popularity spans the globe, while the quadrennial FIFA World Cup is always a huge spectacle that goes beyond sport. It’s a game of fame, money and status, and a coming together of different cultures and styles.
The world’s eyes are all on the tournament in Russia right now. The event is being beamed and streamed to every corner of the globe. And thanks to TV infrastructure and extensive internet access, fans can watch games in all sorts of places – from pubs and fan zones to Mongolian yurts and even small, remote islands on the Pacific.
Check out our other stories:
- Ideas for online video content when you can’t show games
- The most common live video streaming habits of digital audiences
- Still looking for a prime alternative to Snappy TV?
But how is our viewing changing and what will this look like for the next World Cup in Qatar 2022?
How we watched the 2014 World Cup
During the 2014 World Cup held in Brazil, an estimated 280 million people watched matches online or on a mobile device, according to official FIFA data.
As the rights owner, FIFA reached 207 territories with its content (the definition of ‘territory’ being a bit wider than a “country”). The final was watched by approximately 695 million viewers at home (calculated as people who watched at least 20 consecutive minutes in their own home). However, the final figure was surely higher, as many viewers will have watched in their favourite bar or in specially prepared fan zones. Yet it was still a 12% growth when compared to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
According to FIFA, there was more online coverage in 2014 than any previous World Cup tournament, with 188 licensees offering coverage via websites, media players and apps.
What’s more, since 2014 consumer surveys suggest that online TV viewing is up by 36%, while mobile TV viewing has increased by 248%. Obviously these viewing figures have been boosted by technological developments, increased broadband penetration, better devices, and faster internet speeds in all regions.
It seems that the better the infrastructure, the better the online video reach. But credit also has to go to the progressive strategies of many TV stations. With the World Cup proving so popular, national broadcasters continue to show it for free, with no extra charges. Many are committed to making content easily accessible and widely distributed by catering to all viewing habits – from traditional TV to online and mobile.
If not for free, many countries also offer lots of options to pay for access to content beyond a national TV station.
How will people watch the 2018 World Cup?
To see the detailed results of World Cup viewership we will have to wait until the end of the tournament. But with a huge dose of certainty – and some early indicators so far – we can predict that results are going to show a record high when it comes to online video content.
While TV is still the king of sports broadcasts, online live streams are fast gaining traction.
Released just before the 2018 World Cup got underway, a recent IAB report – Live Video Streaming: A Global Perspective – provides us with a better picture.
What’s really interesting is the number of different media platforms that will be used during the 2018 World Cup.
The IAB report asked:
Which, if any, of the following media channels and devices do you plan to use to watch/follow the 2018 FIFA World Cup?
When taking a closer look at the above list, what’s noticeable is that most of the devices will need an internet connection to access World Cup video content such as games.
It gets even more interesting if we go further and look at those answers from geographical regions. According to the report, smartphones are the most popular option (45%) for watching World Cup games in the APAC region (Australia and China), while South Americans prefer TV (49%).
Looking ahead to 2022
It’s a bit too early to write any final conclusions about how we watched this year’s World Cup. But looking at data from 2014 and the available audience insights prior to the tournament in Russia, it looks like online access will be at a record high regardless of the device or platform being used to watch content. Perhaps the 2018 FIFA World Cup will prove a breakthrough for online broadcasters. If so, surely the 2022 tournament will be even more wireless and web focused. It’s time to go online!
 Live Video Streaming – A Global Perspective – IAB Report, June 2018
How to reach Russian sports fans during the FIFA World Cup 2018?
When it comes to the web, Russia is a well-connected super power. It boasts the biggest internet nation in the whole of Europe – a whopping 76% of its citizens are online, which equates to nearly 110 million users. Most of them are using Vkontakte social media platform.
Russia is a market probably unlike anything you know – where Facebook and Google are not the first choice for users; where audiences still love western brands and have a huge appetite for great video content.
With the FIFA World Cup just weeks away, the key to success is VKontakte (VK) – Russia’s answer to Facebook. But what exactly is VK and why do Russians prefer it over other social channels? How can you create a presence on VKontakte (VK) and get more followers for your brand?
Download our e-book to learn for yourself. It’s your essential guide to reaching Russian sports fans during the FIFA World Cup 2018.
Download our e-book here
Ideas for online video content when you can’t show games
Thanks to deals between sports leagues and broadcasters, games are now accessible all over the world. Fans can watch Premier League games in Los Angeles or the Super Bowl in Mumbai – and have become accustomed to the luxury of watching their team on TV or via a streaming service.
For many clubs, they’re unable to stream games on their own social media channels because the rights are in the hands of a league or federation. Yet the huge growth in digital viewing behaviours and the appetite for online video means that clubs are often left wondering how they can get involved. For those fans unable to watch live games at a stadium, or pay for a TV/streaming service, there’s often not much content left for them to enjoy.
Check out our other stories:
- The most common live video streaming habits of digital audiences
- Still looking for a prime alternative to Snappy TV?
But this situation for both clubs and fans can be changed very easily. If you’re part of a club, here’s a list of content ideas you can use to generate great video content, and keep your fans engaged, well informed and bonded to your club community.
Press conferences – before and after games
Fans like to hear why their team lost or know how the dressing room feels after winning. What influenced the coach to use a particular strategy, or why did they wait so long to make a crucial substitution. How are preparations going for the next game? The best way to give your fans all the answers they need is by broadcasting your press conferences.
In sport, injuries are part of life. But when it happens to a key player, fans get really worried. Back in 2006, Leo Messi suffered a metatarsal fracture that ended in 87 days off and him missing 18 games. Imagine how Barca fans would feel if it happened again. That’s why regular injury updates, interviews with doctors and reports on the recovery process are a great source of information for fans.
Other teams’ matches
While fans are often focused on a club’s main team, many clubs have much more to show: a women’s team, the second team and youth academy teams. These games also present huge opportunities and will be of interest to many fans.
For those of fans unable to visit the stadium, an online tour might not substitute a real trip but it is the next best thing. You could show some of the most important places for the team: the locker room, trophy galleries and entrance onto the pitch, as well as fan areas and the press box.
This kind of video tour can also act as a commercial to attract fans to visit the stadium more often and as a way to market to potential buyers of hospitality boxes.
Pre-season games are a chance to show how new players are performing and for fans to check out any changes in formation. It is an exciting time for fans who have been looking forward to seeing games after weeks off in between seasons.
Everything that happens at a club is interesting for its core supporters. It’s worth sharing club moments with fans, such as the signing of new player, the promotion of a youth academy player to the first team, or the presentation of a new kit. There will be lots more ideas you can come up with.
A great way to entertain fans is to organise challenges, so players can show off their skills (or lack of them!). If you need ideas, simply look on YouTube as it’s amazing how many great ideas you can find for this kind of competition.
Match day preparations
This can be really nice for fans, especially for the most important games of the season, such as the first home game, a playoff, derby match or even a final. If you don’t have rights to the actual game, you might show your team’s pre-game routine: their breakfast, the trip to the stadium, warm ups and any final preparations before kick off.
If your club is active in your local community, this is also something that’s worth sharing. Whether it’s a tournament for your youngest fans, or a festival-style event that brings players and fans together.
Fans asking, players responding
This is something many fans like to do – to ask their favourite players about their life and career. You might collect questions via social media and ask your players or training staff to answer them. Remember: this doesn’t have to be 100% serious! The more fun to watch, the better the results will be.
‘Season in a minute’ summaries
It’s great to show your supporters an end of season summary. Whether it’s been full of ups and downs, or a season of trophies, it’s nice to show some extras.
Even if you’re unable to stream club games, there are plenty of things you can show your fans. You just need to stay open to ideas and look around at life in your club. Creating and sharing video content will not only positively influence your marketing efforts, but will keep your fans even more engaged. It’s worth a shot!
A snapshot of internet, social media and sports consumption in Asia
Asia is a fascinating region: a colossal continent with countless cultures and traditions. When it comes to internet and social media use it’s equally diverse – from high penetration in south east Asia to its lowest in central Asia; while elsewhere Thais spend the most time on the web and Filipinos the greatest amount of time on social media.
With the aim of uniting the international sports marketing and media industry with opportunities across Asia, Sportel Asia is taking place between 13-15 March. So, I thought I would look here at some of the biggest trends in Asian social media and sports.
Check for other sports and social media related stories:
- What makes real-time sports videos engaging?
- Local social media to explore – VK in Russia
- A quick guide to understanding esports and gaming fans
China – a growing social media and sports superpower
China alone has 772 million internet users. Yet the country still has millions of people that have yet to access the internet, which means there is huge opportunity for growth.
Unlike many countries across the globe, Facebook is not a social media leader in China. Instead, Chinese people tend to use the microblogging network – Sina Weibo. It’s the most important Chinese social network – a source of everyday information and a platform where Chinese people consume huge amounts of content.
Weibo – home of sports stars
According to Nielsen, China’s emergence as a sports superpower is no secret. And, as one of the biggest social networks in China, Sina Weibo is natural place for sports stars to be seen and found – in particular European football stars!
On Weibo, there’s an enormous demand for fresh content and information dedicated to the best football leagues in Europe. The most popular football club in China is Manchester United, with Real Madrid and Bayern Munich coming in second and third place respectively.  Man Utd is the most followed sports club on Weibo.
The most popular player is Lionel Messi (duh!), with Cristiano Ronaldo coming in second place. However, third place is pretty unexpected: Anthony Martial of Manchester United, which only highlights the uniqueness of the Chinese market.
To rise and shine in China, one of the biggest internet markets in the world, being present on Sina Weibo is a must, not an option.
Football in Indonesia
The popularity of football clubs in China is a reflection of the huge demand for soccer-based content in Asia in general. Super Soccer TV, the Indonesian online-based television network, focuses on football and has a huge demand for its content. Indonesia itself currently ranks 3rd for social media growth (between 2017-2018 at 23%) with football fans often looking for content online through social channels.
Tellyo works with Super Soccer TV to support the live streaming of matches and the creation of short-form football clips for fans to enjoy across the web and social media. The network’s popular channel – supersoccer.tv – acts as a one-stop shop, which can be accessed online, on the go, whenever people want to find football content.
Cricket in Asia
Let’s change the optics a little bit. Do you know what sport is popular in India, Pakistan, and Hong Kong but also in the United Kingdom, Australia and South Africa, all at the same time? If you thought of cricket – then you’re right!
This sport is massively popular amongst millions of people across the globe and there are many cricket tournaments for fans to enjoy worldwide. At Tellyo, we had the great honour to support one of the most prestigious tournaments – The Hong Kong Sixes – that took place at the end of October 2017.
It was great lesson for us – to work with such an engaged, committed audience and millions of viewers who watched the live games online. The event’s organisers were able to provide live streams to a truly multinational audience, which was spread over dozens of countries and across four continents. Live streaming and social media results during the two days of matches were mind-blowing:
With Hong Kong Sixes’ live streams and video content proving 60x more engaging than photos or text posts, these are sure-fire ways to feed the passion and emotion of fans across the world.
The above examples of social media usage in Asia also give us interesting insights into how you might promote your sport or video content in Asia. You need to approach it holistically:
- Take into account the specifics of each country, keeping in mind its limitations and opportunities, while making use of background internet and social media stats to support your chosen direction.
- Look for the similarities that join people from different backgrounds, so you can reach further than one country, if that’s your chosen goal.
Baffled? If you need a tool that can help you with either providing content to current audiences, or reaching new ones, just let us know. Regardless of your approach, industry and experience – we know how to help.
Vertical video is becoming more important than ever
Vertical video is often viewed as the awkward sibling of the landscape format. But vertical is having its time to shine, thanks to the meteoric rise of smartphones and the development of apps like Snapchat.
For many years we saw 16:9 as the ultimate format – the assumption being that video should be displayed horizontally. Our TVs and computer screens are wider than higher, and the same goes for cinema screens. Moreover, vertical video, with its black blocks either side, always looked ugly, right?
But times are changing. The vertical video format is moving ever closer to becoming a standard for mobile video consumption. Vertically-oriented videos have taken hold, particularly across the mobile landscape:
Why the shift from horizontal to vertical video?
Partly due to the preferences of Gen Zers, as this generation like to consume vertically-oriented content. These post-millennials aren’t attached to ‘classic’ screen formats like older generations. Mobile is the natural environment for Gen Z, so the vertical format has never been a problem for them as that’s how they hold their phone anyway.
Many organisations have tapped into this acceptance of vertical videos. When the BBC relaunched  its award-winning and internationally renowned news app, they incorporated a vertical video experience aimed at a younger audience of smartphone users. Vertical videos are now created specifically with this audience in mind, as summed up by James Montgomery, Digital Development Director for BBC News:
“Being good at delivering news to mobiles is particularly important for younger audiences, for whom the smartphone is the primary, or possibly only, source of news.”
If you look at the BBC app today, it includes a prime spot for regular, vertical video news stories.
But it’s not only about younger generations. We all use mobile devices more often than ever. Everyone has a smartphone, and thanks to better connectivity and cheaper mobile internet access, we use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat literally everywhere – and vertically!
All of the main social media channels have adjusted the way they display video and they now fit their video content vertically, without any annoying and ugly black frames.
Video content consumption is evolving
The acceptance and integration of vertical video content into apps and social media platforms is just one element of much broader changes in the way people now consume content. For example, audiences want more real-time information, while online services are widely considered a primary means of media consumption – both of which are topics being discussed at this week’s Mobile World Congress (MWC), as part of its Content & Media theme.
Tellyo’s Jakub Majkowski recently shared his thoughts on these MWC topics in a LinkedIn article: Evolving relationships, live events and fan engagement.
Is the future vertical or horizontal?
Both vertical and horizontal standards will develop in parallel. There is obviously a need for both, simply because video will always come in a broad range of content types – from news clips consumed on the go to broadcast-quality video-on-demand. We still prefer to watch 16:9 formats on our TVs and laptops for example, and this probably isn’t going to change. At least not before VR becomes standard in cinemas and home entertainment systems!
What will become increasingly important is to be able to serve video content in different formats, so viewers get their preferred choice for their favoured device. Here at Tellyo, our platform allows you to set different aspect ratios for your published video content (other than 16:9). We’ve included ratios that fit the mobile formats used by popular social networks like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Periscope. Speak to our team about going vertical!
What makes real-time sports videos engaging?
It’s a good question to pose: what does make a real-time sports video engaging? Having worked with the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) for a year now, we feel we’ve developed a deeper understanding from what they’ve created and shared through our platform.
In this blog, we’ll take a look at some of the ITTF’s best moments of 2017 – a year that was truly amazing for the organisation, the players and the sport itself. Here at Tellyo, we’re extremely proud to work with the ITTF – the largest international sports federation in the world – to help them distribute such amazing events and historical moments across social media and to thousands of table tennis fans.
Here are their best, most epic video moments of 2017.
Did it hit?
Full of emotion and utterly unpredictable, sport has it all at times. Millimetres can separate players, with even the best referees sometimes struggling to make a call. Here’s what happened during the women’s finals of the ITTF World Cup.
Was the referee’s verdict right? Did the ball hit the table, or miss by millimetres? Watching the above video, we could argue all night long without any satisfactory conclusion; while the video’s comments section is also proof that fans love to watch this kind of content, to debate decisions and make their own call.
The Did it hit? video reached more than 6 million people, gained 1.3 million views and achieved more than 200 shares! And, just for the record, it was Zhu Yuling who won this amazing game!
The turning point
Every tournament features great personalities and the narrative of an underdog fighting their way to victory. Table tennis is no different. At the 2017 World Table Tennis Championships, the audience was treated to one of the most amazing games in the history of table tennis, ever.
Lin Gaoyuan had a five match points lead against Xu Xin, the world number three. More often than not, the winner would be obvious. But not this time, as Xu Xin kept pressing and won the game point by point, proving that table tennis is one of the most amazing and thrilling sports to watch.
Published on the ITTF’s Facebook page, it was table tennis’s equivalent of the 2005 Champions League Final between Liverpool and Milan. It reached more than 17 million, and achieved 1.7million views and 55,000 engagements, including over 7,000 shares!
Teenagers for the win
Born in 2003, Tomokazu Harimoto is table tennis’s teenage prodigy. Back in August 2017 he won the men’s singles title during ITTF World Tour in the Czech Republic. Aged 14, he became the youngest player ever to win the title, or any similar title, beating much older and more experienced players – something that doesn’t happen very often in professional sports.
Here’s one of the most popular ITTF videos from 2017: Harimoto winning against former Olympic bronze medallist, Jun Mizutani, who was two-times older than Harimoto at the time.
The video of Harimoto’s win reached 1.5 million and achieved almost 300,000 views on Facebook and Twitter.
What have we learned from these epic moments?
Online engagement is triggered by moments that represent the very essence of sport:
- The high emotion of being a sports fan
- Unusual turn of events or controversial decisions that sway matches
- The narrative of underdogs and youngsters defeating those considered to be masters
- Heroes like 14-year-old Harimoto who are quickly taken to people’s hearts
The ITTF videos shared above certainly resonated in some way with audiences – be it through emotion, or the narrative of an underdog or hero – and engagement levels rocketed as a result.
To experience even more epic moments, stay tuned for the upcoming 2018 ITTF Team World Cup being hosted in London.