Video content marketing is increasingly becoming the go-to format for internet users. With the vast majority of online users consuming more than 6.9 million million gigabytes of video data every day, the logical step for sports brands is to capitalise on growing trends and user preferences.
Social media networks receive the highest volume of viewers. According to statistics produced by GlobalWebindex, 56% of internet users report watching videos across four major networks. Over one in two online users watch video on social networks.
With a third of internet users consuming over one billion hours of video content, YouTube is leading the way for viewer engagement. Facebook users watch over eight billion video clips every month and 4 in 10 Snapchat and Instagram users watch at least one video a month.
To break this down further, individuals are watching almost three hours of video content on social media every day – around 30 minutes more than the average online consumer. Furthermore, viewers are switching from traditional TV viewing to online sources to watch sports.
And social video viewers have an inbred culture of sharing. Statistics reveal that 26% of social media users are more likely to upload or share video content than the average internet user. The reason for this is because the younger generations are accessing the internet using mobile devices and social sharing helps teenagers define their personality, interests and influence.
Social step up video streaming
The trend of watching video footage has not gone unnoticed by social media executives. Earlier this year Facebook launched a new video streaming hub to audiences in the United States. Listed under a new menu option called, ‘Watch’ content includes live shows, Major League Baseball games and other sports events.
Snapchat has also added a ‘Discover’ feature which hosts a wealth of video content. The social network intends to increase volumes over the coming quarters. Although Snapchat may not be the most popular platform across the globe, it has the largest population of Generation Z users. Snapchat is the space for sports brands looking to attract a younger audience.
YouTube is already in the process of promoting its paid-for streaming service. In the States, 84% of internet users confirm they have visited the service. Again, the younger generations are showing the biggest interest with a massive 95% of this age group engaging in sports content.
Younger viewers are also driving mobile statistics. More internet users are reaching for their mobile devices than desktop computers to access the web. The most popular online activities on mobile are social media networks, followed by messenger apps and watching sports videos streaming in third place.
How sports brands can leverage video content
When you consider the popularity of social platforms, together with the efforts of these media networks to cater towards user behaviours, the opportunities for sports brands are apparent. With pre and mid-roll ads mostly immune to ad-blockers, sports brands should look to reach a wider audience by squeezing in video ads between sports segments.
And there are many other strategies sports brands can adopt to utilise video content on social platforms and your website. Here are a few examples to help get your creative juices flowing.
Focus on your product
Video content is a great way to raise brand and product awareness. But remember, modern consumers are not interested in traditional advertising, they want information or stories. Show them how to use your product in ways that will engage your audience.
Create a buzz around the game
Pre and post-match content is the best way to draw the crowds to your website or social media pages. Utilise footage that is made available by broadcasters and filter your videos into the selection. You could even become an internet star by presenting your own show and providing exciting match analysis, statistics and phone-ins.
The sportsman in all of us
Younger sports fans often play the sports they are interested in. Why not run competitions for the local kids and film the events. This builds a buzz around your brand, creates awareness of your products and shows you care about the community by getting them involved in sporting events. Giving products away as prizes will increase your sales.
Showing behind the screen activities
Sports teams are starting a new trend in consumer behaviour by airing behind-the-scenes footage of training, interviews and organised events to attract fans. Attract a high volume of traffic by publishing footage that is relevant to your audience.
Marketing requires creative thinking, but there are opportunities for brands across all sports and lifestyle interest. Take a hint from Yoga Luluemon. The yoga brand appealed to a growing culture of health-conscious consumers by recording a series of seven short documentary-style films featuring influencers in sports and music to help promote the videos.
If you don’t have the budget, time or ideas to create your own videos, why not take advantage of the culture of user-generated content. The swimwear brand, Arena, dived into this trend by taking utilising the crowdsourcing video platform, Userfarm’ to host a contest celebrating the values of sporting champions alongside champions of everyday life.
More than 120,000 filmmakers were invited to submit videos in return for a trip to the Swimming World Cup in Budapest. Using social media to raise awareness and cultivate engagement, Arena’s campaign boosted their consumer engagement and increased online visibility. The more engagement you get from internet users the higher you rank in search engines.
The internet is a haven for sports brands. Modern technology, consumer behaviours and a vast audience provides a wealth of opportunity to attract a wider audience and increase profits. The danger for sports brands is if you don’t utilise video content. Because your rivals will. And if your competitors are luring all your customers, your business will be relegated to the insolvency league.