Live content streaming opens engagement and sponsorship avenues for Little Athletics

Australian Little Athletics Championships employs new live streaming suite of services for online, on-demand video to expand reach of national event

A new online media streaming service is giving Australia’s Little Athletics the ability to raise the sport’s profile by opening up wider audiences, engagement and corporate sponsorship opportunities.

The Australian Little Athletics Championships (ALAC) is a national competition held every year to celebrate the achievements of Australia’s best junior athletes. The event is the culmination of state championships held across the country, which attract more than 105,000 participants.

Historically, the national event has had about 1000 attendees, a far cry from the 3000 to 4000 people who frequent state-level competitions, Little Athletics CEO, Martin Stillman, told CMO. Stillman joined Little Athletics 12 months ago from Tennis Victoria, where he was the cardio and metropolitan tennis manager. His resume includes general manager roles at AFL Victoria, as well as the Australian Motor Sport Federation.

“It’s logical parents, families and friends can get to events in their own state more easily, whereas unfortunately with the national event, we really only have the host state’s family and friends in attendance,” he said. “We wanted to look at an opportunity to take the event around Australia.”

As a way of extending its reach and allowing more friends and family to be involved, Little Athletics looked to live streaming ALAC online, and turned to its member management partner, IMG Sports Technology Group (STG), and its technology partner, Hostworks, for help.

While the initial plan was to launch a live broadcast from 2015, IMG STG and Hostworks were able to come together just weeks before the championship took place on 3 May this year and offer high-definition, live streaming of races using Hostworks’ new Media Foundry suite of services. In total, eight hours of footage was broadcast in high quality and high-definition format to audiences in Australia as well as overseas.

All technical aspects and the on-demand content were managed by Hostworks, while IMG STG was tasked with logistics. Little Athletics was then responsible for program scheduling, liaising on logistics, directing cameras, and filling in the break time between events with content.

ALAC hired two sporting heroes and athletics experts, Brendan Cole and Alex Rowe, to provide informative and relevant commentary through the event. Feeds were also streamed live through to electronic scoreboards around Lakeside Stadium in Melbourne, where the national championships took place.

“This year was 50 years of Little Athletics and for the first time in our national event’s 43-year history, we could showcase the championships,” Stillman said. “On the day, participants were ecstatic.

“The pinnacle of the association is to have this national championship and now all those state participants can see their peers running and competing, which is a very special aspect of this.”

The online broadcast generated more than 4500 views on the Little Athletics’ website, lifting the viewership of the event by 450 per cent. This was despite the fact that the Little Athletics team only had a fortnight to scope the work and about 48 hours to promote the broadcast. Stillman said it used its owned website, as well as Facebook and Twitter, to promote the live streaming service, and asked all states to share that information with their audiences.

“No doubt with the positive feedback... and when we’re able to market this aggressively next year, we’ll see significantly greater numbers and greater reach from 2015 and beyond,” he said.

Related: West Tigers NRL side to launch TV channel and social media app

Having a live streaming capability also presents a range of new sponsorship opportunities for the organisation to capitalise on. “There is scope to seek corporate partnership, which will help offset the costs of doing this,” Stillman said. “It’s another medium to pursue corporate partnership and generate more revenue for the sport.

“But the expenditure was worth every cent; with more time for corporate support and communication, we’re a long way to paying for the coverage.”

State-based centres were also thrilled with the broadcast, and Stillman’s team was inundated with comments on Facebook and other social media channels. At least two states are planning to utilise live streaming for their events next year.

“For Little Athletics and athletics in Australia this is a phenomenal opportunity to get the message out there to more people and showcasing our sport,” he continued. “Athletics has not historically had the prominence in terms of TV coverage, so this will only be beneficial for us as a sport.”

The team behind ALAC has already identified several ways to improve on this year’s coverage, including offering race replays, as well as replays of certain aspects of the day.

Stillman also pointed to the earned media opportunities of having rich media footage available, such as the ability for friends, family and participants to share content through social channels and devices.

“We had stories of grandparents watching their grandchildren run on tablet or iPhone devices, which is just terrific,” he added.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Signup to CMO’s new email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

More Videos

looking for the best quality of SMM Panel ( Social Media Marketing Panel ) is a website where People Buy Social Media Services Such as Fa...

Kavin kyzal

How to manage social media during Covid-19

Read more

Thank you for sharing your knowledge. Definitely bookmarked for future reading! Check this website https://a2designlab.com/ with lots of ...

Pierce Fabreverg

Study: Gen Z are huge opportunity for brands

Read more

Thanks for sharing. You might want to check this website https://lagimcardgame.com/. An up and coming strategic card game wherein the cha...

Pierce Fabreverg

Board games distributor partners with Deliveroo in business strategy pivot

Read more

Such an important campaign, dyslexia certainly need more awareness. Amazing to see the work Code Read is doing. On the same note we are a...

Hugo

New campaign aims to build understanding around scope and impact of dyslexia

Read more

Great Job on this article! It demonstrates how much creativity, strategy and effort actually goes to produce such unique logo and brandin...

Pierce Fabreverg

Does your brand need a personality review? - Brand vision - CMO Australia

Read more

Blog Posts

A few behavioural economics lesson to get your brand on top of the travel list

Understanding the core principles of Behavioural Economics will give players in the travel industry a major competitive advantage when restrictions lift and travellers begin to book again. And there are a few insights in here for the rest of the marketing community, too.

Dan Monheit

Co-founder, Hardhat

Predicting the Future: Marketing science or marketing myth?

Unicorns, the Sunken City of Atlantis, Zeus: They are very famous. So famous in fact, that we often think twice about whether they are real or not. Sometimes if we talk about something widely enough, and for long enough, even the strangest fiction can seem like fact. But ultimately it is still fiction - stories we make up and tell ourselves over and over until we believe.

Kathy Benson

Chief client officer, Ipsos

Winning means losing in the game of customer retention

At a time of uncertainty and economic hardship, customer retention takes on much greater importance. CX Lavender’s Linda O’Grady examines the big grey area between ‘all’ and ‘best’ customers when deciding who is worth fighting for and how.

Linda O'Grady

Data Strategy Partner & Business Partner, CX Lavender

Sign in