On March 12th, 2017 the Symetra Tour is going to stream Florida’s Natural Charity Classic Golf Tournament on Facebook Live.
This will be the first ever instance of both a women’s professional golf utilizing Facebook’s streaming capabilities and the Symetra Tour being shown live. The Symetra Tour has been providing qualified amateurs with a means to be promoted to a professional within the LPGA.
Released on April 6th, 2016, Facebook live has been utilized by several other sports associations and ad companies, but what advantages does this bring to the companies? According to Symetra Tour’s Chief Business Officer Mike Nichols is that “The Facebook Live platform has emerged as a viable way — both from a distribution and economical standpoint — for professional sports organizations like ours to attract a larger audience.”
[Facebook Live helps] showcase these next generation talents to a worldwide audience.
The expansion of live streaming golf on Facebook is primarily due to the success of PGA’s first experiment with the platform in August 2016. Despite its success, the stream acted more as an advert for their paid official streaming service, so how can they, and other streamers, use these the platform to add to the viewer’s experience?
One of the main advantages of a live stream is that people are able to interact and react in real time when something happens. This means that user have a platform next to the video where they are able to share their opinions as well as the usual emoji’s to express their feelings.
Streamed content is also able to alter their material in real time, meaning if fans are reacting positively to a video they are able to continue it instead of having to adhere to specific time constraints. They are also able to be monetized through advertising done during the Livestream while the platform makes money by running their own ads throughout the video, although content producer’s must make sure not to run too many ads, or it may turn away viewers.
What is unique to this venture into live streaming is that it puts large and small competitions on the same platform, allowing them access to the same amount of viewers. Overall, increased exposure of previously hard to find or inaccessible lower league competitions across many sports (see Pitchero Play) will not only allow fans a more extensive experience, but also increase the competitiveness of the sport as new stars are discovered.
University Student studying International Business at Richmond, The American International University in London and Intern at WePlay Digital Sports Agency.