Cricket Australia Looks to Youtube to increase numbers
Cricket Australia (CA) has acknowledged the move to Foxtel as a pay per view platform will reduce their audience numbers but their betting on Youtube to help combat the problem.
CA has now launched a content-sharing and technology partnership with YouTube and aims to draw in a younger audience.
Google will now also take over Cricket Australia’s tech stack from Nine and the deal will see the creation of a new content series that will be simulcast across YouTube and on cricket.com.au’s homepage.
Executive GM of broadcasting, digital media and commercial, Ben Amarfio, agrees Cricket Australia “have always been very tight with the rights. We have always kept them to ourselves.”
“For the first time ever, we are opening up the curtains.
“We were a bit greedy; we wanted all the traffic to come to us and all the engagement. [The deal with Fox] will give us much more reach,” he said.
UK cricket experienced a similar decline when they took the sport to pay per view but Amarfio believes CA’s deal is different.
“When the England Cricket team did that deal with Sky a couple of decades ago, they put 100% of their live content behind a paywall, which meant their exposure was huge but went down to much smaller than it had been before.
“The big distinction between that deal and ours is that 80% of our premium content will still be on free-to-air. Only 20% will be behind the paywall, whereas theirs was 100%. We’re not that concerned.”
Finn Bradshaw, Cricket Australia’s head of digital, added: “It will be content that is promoted by YouTube; that is targeted by YouTube.”
“We’re proud of our audience, but we know there’s an audience we’re never going to get on our own platform, and YouTube is obviously really powerful way of reaching younger people.”