Sports and Digital Media are very hot in Brazil in anticipation of the 2014 Soccer World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games. Portada’s Brazil correspondent Debora Chaves writes about a new partnership between Yahoo and Esporte Interativo, a a Brazilian sports multiplatform content company. The deal combines Yahoo’s reach and content with Esporte Interativo’s social media and sports know-how.

Yahoo has just closed a partnership with Esporte Interativo, a private Brazilian sports multi-platform digital content company, to accelerate growth and increase its share in online TV, social networks and mobile apps.

The new portal Yahoo Esporte Interativo features mainly soccer cup news, but has also a comprehensive coverage of all the other sports, with TV videos and scores. “The goal is to reach within months the second best place in user management for sports digital media,” said Renato Pelissaro, Yahoo’s marketing director.

According to ComScore, Globo Esporte leads the ranking of Brazilian sports web platforms with 22m unique visitors, followed by UOL (9,5m), Terra (9,4m), MSN (5,5m) and Yahoo (4,1m).

The plan is to anticipate as much as possible the 2014 World Cup, through complete coverage of all the qualifying games and even the friendly matches before the World Cup.

“Our partnership is complementary; Yahoo has the tools and the tech development skills and we have the expertise and leadership in social media with 4,6m followers in Facebook and more than 100m views in YouTube,” said Mauricio Portela, Esporte Interativo’s new media vice-president.

“The idea is to deliver a much more customized and interactive and dynamic experience to the user,” said Pelissaro, listing the events that will come in the next years, such as Confederations Cup Soccer tournament, that will happen un less than a year, the 2014 Soccer Fifa World Cup and also the 2016 Olympic Games.

“The plan is to anticipate as much as possible the 2014 World Cup, through  complete  coverage of all the qualifying games and even the friendly matches before the World Cup,” said Portela, adding that Esporte Interativo has the exclusive rights to broadcast online two of the biggest soccer cups such as the Champion League and the Europe League.

Thiago Muniz, Media Director of Você Pertence Movimento de Ideias Marketing and Advertising Agency, sad that his clients are eager to profit on the interactivity provided by Esporte Interativo. “They are very good on communicating skills with the sports audience in the social networks,” he said. “Even better than Globo Esporte if you consider the degree of interaction they managed to get when Mano Menezes, the ex-Brazilian soccer national team was sacked last November, 16th”.

According to Muniz, the metrics of that specific day shows exactly the reason why the new portal of Yahoo! Esporte Interativo is a good bet for the clients. “Although Globo Esporte managed to get almost as much ‘likes’ as Yahoo! Esporte Interativo when the news spread, the number of ‘shares’ and ‘comments’ were much higher,” he said. Additionally, Yahoo! Esporte Interativo was more agile to post a quiz on the possible new coach and the audience responded massively. The know for sure how to interact with the user.

Julio Mariz, ex-CEO of Traffic Sports Group and an investor in De Ponta Marketing Esportivo and Be! Interative Agency, said that Yahoo! and Esporte Interativo’s strategy to join forces is a step in the right direction. “Even market-leader TV Globo  is increasingly transferring its exclusive content to the internet; there is no way around it,” Mariz said.

To capitalize on the new portal strengths Yahoo! Esporte Interativo created the “Melhor Futebol do Mundo” project, which covers all the most important world soccer competitions. The four main sponsorship slots are sold for  by R$ 11,8m (US$ 5.6m). “These packages offer a mix of high visibility formats in the portal, several options of rich media in the events and an integration with the other social networks and mobile platforms”, Pelissaro noted.

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