On February 24th at 8:00 pm EET fans of FCSB and Universitatea Crioava that where outside of Romania received a Facebook notification that a live match was about to start - from this moment a world of opportunities opened up for Liga Profesionista de Fotbal.
The digital transformation of Football has now elevated the accessibility of watching any match, anywhere to ….…ANYONE!
This journey of digital transformation was made possible by a partnership between the Romanian Professional Football League (LPF), Stadeum Sports, EAD and Romania’s Liga 1 Football clubs.
Football’s main product has always been and always will be “the match”, and by building their brands around the match, football clubs can now use this new era of digital transformation to launch their main product to fans around the world and simultaneously capitalize on everything else clubs can market, from players jerseys to sponsorship revenue.
The next big market is online and that opens up a world of new places and ways for football clubs in all leagues to generate revenue.
The live streaming project designed by Stadeum Sports, together with LPF and current rights holders, EAD.ro, represents the first proof of how football clubs, leagues, federations and rights holders can work together to capitalize on the global online market for football.
THE STORY: PART I, LIGA 1 Uniting their clubs
LPF brought all the football clubs from the first league of Romania to Bucharest to optimize their Facebook pages for future business opportunities . For two days, Stadeum Sports worked together with 14 marketing managers coming from each club to firmly establish their Facebook pages.
The process of preparing began with verifying that the business manager of each club, i.e. “the club” had legal ownership of their respective Facebook page. By the end of the day two, ownership of 11 Facebook club pages were verified and the remaining 3 were in the final stages of verification.
During the verification process, the Stadeum Sports team assisted each football club every step of the way, helping them overcome each and every issue by investigating and analyzing it, then providing a specific solution for each specific issue - fast, so that all the teams could be ready on match day.
Verifying each clubs Facebook page was a vital step that teams committed to make happen successfully, ensuring every organizations page was clearly linked to the ownership of that club. That process was done in a completely transparent way so all involved fully understood the value of ownership verification.
THE STORY: PART II,– Protecting the assets of football clubs
For football clubs, their online presence represents one of the most important activities in maximizing the value of the club. Having an official Facebook page, along with Instagram, and other online accounts are all assets for football clubs.
Stadeum Sports takes an active role in protecting the clubs pages. In the days after meeting with with the clubs, Stadeum’s team helped clubs to take down fake unofficial Facebook and Instagram pages , from individuals illegally using the clubs intellectual property.
At the request of the clubs, the Stadeum team took down more than 500 links, links containing pages using the name of the clubs, photos & videos from the clubs official pages, assisting the clubs to understand how these links damage their products and dilute the value of products that LPF, clubs and TV rights owners have worked hard for years to build.
To understand the magnitude of the damage caused by the illegal content owners must view each page and its content, as work time that is lost, because clubs are creators of content, content that is monetized enabling clubs to be sustainable and produce football on the pitch.
In view of this, there is huge value for all stakeholders in paying attention to, and protecting their content and their brand. Caring for these assets requires constantly checking any and all online platforms in order to detect illegal content. The Stadeum team provides continuous analysis that initially showed more than 700 cases of illegal content related to the Liga 1 clubs, that if left unchecked, would only grow.
THE STORY: PART III, First official Facebook live stream
Football fans expect to be reached and engaged through different kinds of live streaming platforms because of the variety of places fans engage with on their mobile devices. Our analysis showed that Facebook is the number one platform fans expect to watch a football match.
So after the verification process was completed of the Liga 1 Facebook club pages and the process was implemented to manage their online content, the team moved on to the most exciting part of the story: streaming a Liga 1 football match live!
The company that owns the broadcasting rights played a key role in the streaming on Facebook the FCSB – Universitatea Craiova match. EAD is the company that own the rights for Liga 1 matches and was involved, supportive and hard working during the whole process. Stadeum Sports contracted Grabyo, the leading cloud video production platform. Grabyo’s powerful browser-based tools enabled the digital team to produceand distribute live match streamssimultaneously to multiple Facebook Pages.
The Liga 1 match between FCSB and Universitatea Craiova far exceeded the expectations of all parties involved. The live content was streamed on FCSB, Universitatea Craiova, Liga Profesionista de Fotbal and Look Sport Facebook pages.
Taking into consideration that the broadcasted match - i.e. the content, could only be viewed outside Romania, there was no paid promotion and only a few pages streamed the match– the results were outstanding!
Being streamed officially for the first time on Facebook the Liga 1 match between FCSB - Universitatea Craiova demonstrated the huge potential Romanian football has, to generate interest from fans around the world.
So, the results of the live stream are broken down as follows:
- Total number of views: 101.000
- Total number of impressions: 279.700
- Total number of reactions: 4.452
- Total number of shares: 812
- Total number of comments: 2.403
THE NEVER ENDING STORY: PART IV
Stadeum Sports will continue to provide the necessary knowledge, support and guidance to all the stakeholders involved in Liga 1 streaming football matches, protecting the assets of the clubs and the content of the media production.
The digital transformation of Liga 1 will continue as all stakeholders work together with Stadeum Sports on this exciting project!
EAD is currently entitled to officially exploit the broadcasting rights for Liga 1 matches.
Stadeum Sports – We are experimenting with a variety of Facebook tools that create more opportunities for Leagues, Teams, Athletes and Sports Broadcasters. We’ll continue to work with various Facebook formats to expand the ways our clients can earn revenue with Facebook such as Ad Breaks, Branded Content, Sponsorship and Fan Subscriptions.
Grabyo – Grabyo is the leading cloud-based video production, editing and distribution platform, equipping partners with the tools to manage agile video distribution strategies across all major social media platforms, mobile and OTT applications.
Trusted by major publishers and rights holders such as Sky Sports, ITV, BT Sport, Major League Soccer, Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, Big Ten Network, Fox Sports, Univision, LaLiga, The English Premier League and AELTC Wimbledon; Grabyo’s SaaS platform is designed to help digital teams maximise their resources, with no additional software and limited training needed to utilise its browser-based tools.
Grabyo has strategic partnerships across OTT, social media and broadcast including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Snap. Grabyo was a launch partner for Facebook Live, Periscope Producer, Twitter Amplify and has delivered more than eight billion video views for partners in 2018.