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What: With World Cup over, it can be deemed an overall global success not just in soccer, but in sports business.
Why it matters: Brands were able to use social media to deliver messages more than ever, via nontraditional outlets like Twitch, a trend that will only increase.

The FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCupis now in the rear view mirror, as soccer friendlies and several months of MLS (@MLSnow take center stage in North America, as global fans of “The Beautiful Game” await training and then the opening of the elite European leagues in the late summer.

The lessons learned from World Cup activation and engagement continue to grow. The effective implementation of social campaigns tied to the games were in record numbers, Spanish language broadcasts in the U.S. drew solid audiences despite the fact that the U.S. did not qualify for the event, and many of the elite Spanish language countries exited a little earlier than expected. Still the drama and life displayed by first timers like Peru and the continued growth and engagement of Mexico led to an even bigger bounce than what was expected making World Cup in Russia an overall global success not just in soccer, but in sports business.

…[B]rands that invested in social were able to find a new engagement platform, especially for digital first millennial consumers, that had not existed before.
credit: Soccer.ru

In the U.S., the change of leadership at the top of USA Soccer (@USASoccer), and the announcement that the 2026 Cup will be coming to North America has also given rise to even more hope that soccer as a property will still see its biggest days ahead.

With that forward looking idea comes one more look back at World Cup engagement, this time through an engagement platform becoming more and more prevalent as sports looks to be customized and digital first. Twitch (@Twitch ‏), the Amazon owned streaming service, has become a monster and go to platform for esports for several years, and now leagues like the NBA have looked to create more formal relationships as a custom screen experience for fans. The NBA G league (@nbagleagueexperimented with great success on Twitch last season, and more and more relationships will be coming, especially as Amazon itself continues its ramp up with broadcast rights for major sports leagues around the world.

Portada worked with Stream Hatchet (@StreamHatchet), one of the world’s elite digital measurement services, to look at Twitch and the World Cup, and how and if the official brands tied to World Cup actually gained share of voice across the channels created by fans on Twitch before and then during the World Cup. Given the fact that Twitch had no official relationship with FIFA, the share of voice for brands might be expected to be small. However what played out was actually interesting, as it shows that brands that invested in social were able to find a new engagement platform, especially for digital first millennial consumers, that had not existed before.

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courtesy Wanda

Who were the brands that won out over the thousands of Twitch channels and conversations created specifically around World Cup? There were five that entered conversations best: Wanda, Hyundai, Adidas, Visa and Coke, with the engagement and chatter about the brands on Twitch starting before the Games actually began, and then peaking as the semi-finals and finals came into view.

Given the savviness of Asian consumers around esports and the use of Twitch as a medium of choice, the success of engagement for brands like Wanda and Hyundai makes great sense. However to see global brands like Visa and Coke, and an apparel brand like Adidas be in conversations throughout the course of the Games opens a very unique window for future engagement. Keep in mind that little to no sponsorship dollars were spent in conjunction with Twitch, so all the engagement mentions and conversations, sometimes as large as 50,000, all game about in a generic and authentic form for the young consumers watching and talking about the World Cup on the platform.

It provides a great litmus test into the power of both a custom streaming channel, and a second screen experience not just for the World Cup, but for any sports event looking to engage and activate going forward. Now with such a massive spend by brands on traditional channels, will dollars suddenly flow to Twitch, or even other second screen streaming experiences like Facebook Live, that easily in the short term? No. However this snapshot (below) by Stream Hatchet and Portada shows that there is growing value that has been anecdotal, and now is quantifiable, as brands looks to engage new consumers on a platform they are comfortable on and more and more used to using.

While focus remains on big screen for now, the handheld, custom experience continues to make inroads, the proof, even in World Cup, is now there to see.

Cover image: Mahdi Zare/Fars News Agency
By Gabriela Gutiérrez M.

YouTube has more viewers, but Twitch generates better profits.

The world’s 665 million viewers of gaming video content (GVC) exceed the total population of the United States and Mexico together. This explains how this industry is able to generate profits of US $4.6 billion, according to digital gaming market researcher SuperData Research.

YouTube Gaming and Twitch (bought by Amazon in 2014 for US $970 million) are the two platforms that dominate the eSports broadcasting market. However, although YouTube has more viewers, Twitch is making bigger profits. According to SuperData, the eSports platform captures only 16 percent of the audience but earns 37 percent of its revenue from gaming video content. This is mainly due to the direct income it receives through subscriptions.

Within the industry, brands and advertisers add US $3.129 billion to the gaming video content market, while subscriptions and donations generate US $1.418 billion. Alejandro Leyva, alias Alk4pon3, one of Mexico’s most important eSports influencers, says that it is easier for him to position the brands through Twitch since the network reaches a market whose average age is 21; unlike YouTube, where the market age drops to teenagers, who have lower purchasing power.

Twitch is fairer with content creators.

In addition, “Twitch is fairer with content creators,” says Alk4pon3. “When you’re broadcasting, and an event song starts playing in the background, YouTube takes a portion of your revenue to give to the owners of the song, whereas Twitch blocks the sound.”

“Gaming video content represents a highly desirable marketplace for advertisers, due to the fact that its audience is young, tech savvy and willing to spend money,” states Carter Rogers, Research Manager at SuperData Research.

SuperData’s research concludes that men make up 54% of the gaming video content audience, with women comprising the remaining 46%. In addition, gamers who like to watch gaming related videos spend an average of US $70 on games and content, or 56% more than gamers who do not consume videos.

Companies that do not advertise to GVC viewers risk losing potential customers.

“Companies that do not advertise to GVC viewers risk losing potential customers, as they resort to legacy media streams. With a global audience that reaches more viewers than HBO, Netflix, ESPN and Hulu combined, brands may be missing out on the next prime-time viewing activity, not unlike watching television or sports during peak viewing hours,” adds Rogers.

What: Google has made a deal to buy  video game-livestreaming firm Twitch for US $1 billion, which will join its major  Youtube property and  expand its video empire.
Why it matters: The acquisition will expand Google’s video ad inventory beyond YouTube and create more opportunities for advertisers.

descargaGoogle has bought game-livestreaming firm Twitch for US $1 billion. Although further terms of the deal were not disclosed, the acquisition will definitely  expand Google’s video ad inventory beyond YouTube. The deal underlines the value of live Internet streaming and the rise of competitive gaming as a spectator sport — something that attracts millions of viewers and provides millionaire opportunities for advertisers.

The deal underlines the value of live Internet streaming and the rise of competitive gaming as a spectator sport.

Launched in 2011, San Francisco-based Twitch is an aggregation site for streaming video games in real-time that hosts more than 50 million monthly users. Users can broadcast their desktop, Xbox One or PlayStation 4 sessions to online viewers. The company counts with a subscription model that allows streamers to deliver perks to channel subscribers. The site is ad-heavy already, but still, could be a major platform for Google’s programmatic video ad strategy. The startup has raised about US $35 million so far.

On the one hand, tech and financial analysts have agreed on Google’s acquisition of Twitch being good for gamers and live streaming service. On the other hand, many gamers fear that Google’s strict moderation of YouTube content could carry over to live streaming and cut down the Twitch experience.

Back in 2006 when Google bought YouTube for US $1.65 billion , the search engine giant had plenty of work to do with enforcement of music copyrights, but Twitch already has relationships with game publishers. Actually, according to Twitch, many major game publishers have already signed a deal with Twitch that will allow their games to be shown on the network.

Now Google’s YouTube division is said to be in charge of the acquisition, which would definitely transform YouTube’s business.

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What: Google has made a deal to buy  video game-livestreaming firm Twitch for US $1 billion, which will join its major  Youtube property and  expand its video empire.
Why it matters: The acquisition will expand Google’s video ad inventory beyond YouTube and create more opportunities for advertisers.

descargaGoogle has bought game-livestreaming firm Twitch for US $1 billion. Although further terms of the deal were not disclosed, the acquisition will definitely  expand Google’s video ad inventory beyond YouTube. The deal underlines the value of live Internet streaming and the rise of competitive gaming as a spectator sport — something that attracts millions of viewers and provides millionaire opportunities for advertisers.

The deal underlines the value of live Internet streaming and the rise of competitive gaming as a spectator sport.

Launched in 2011, San Francisco-based Twitch is an aggregation site for streaming video games in real-time that hosts more than 50 million monthly users. Users can broadcast their desktop, Xbox One or PlayStation 4 sessions to online viewers. The company counts with a subscription model that allows streamers to deliver perks to channel subscribers. The site is ad-heavy already, but still, could be a major platform for Google’s programmatic video ad strategy. The startup has raised about US $35 million so far.

On the one hand, tech and financial analysts have agreed on Google’s acquisition of Twitch being good for gamers and live streaming service. On the other hand, many gamers fear that Google’s strict moderation of YouTube content could carry over to live streaming and cut down the Twitch experience.

Back in 2006 when Google bought YouTube for US $1.65 billion , the search engine giant had plenty of work to do with enforcement of music copyrights, but Twitch already has relationships with game publishers. Actually, according to Twitch, many major game publishers have already signed a deal with Twitch that will allow their games to be shown on the network.

Now Google’s YouTube division is said to be in charge of the acquisition, which would definitely transform YouTube’s business.

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