Twitter struck deals yesterday with Major League Baseball and the National Hockey League to live-stream their content, a potentially game-changing move for brands that traditionally advertise during televised matches.
Given that digital advertising costs less than its broadcast counterpart, brands could save significantly by switching to the social platform. They could also tap into a highly engaged audience. Beer brands – one of the heaviest advertisers during sports events – generate the most engagement on Twitter, according to L2’s Social Platforms report. Celebrity content such as athlete sponsorships also racks up high engagement.
As that suggests, despite Twitter’s sluggish user growth, account owners are still engaging with branded content. Brands with more than 1,500 followers saw their communities grow by 72% between 2014 and 2015, according to the L2 study. Live events could further increase that momentum.
Yesterday’s deal is the latest entry on Twitter’s growing roster of sports content acquisitions. Last week, the National Basketball Association announced plans to create original content exclusively for Twitter, although those videos will not include actual games. While the platform has seen weak demand for its most recent ad products as well as slowing use on the part of consumers, a wide array of exclusive sports content could encourage both advertisers and users to revisit the platform.