BT Sport makes UEFA Champions League final our most social broadcast ever
By Delia Bushell, Managing Director of BT TV and BT Sport
BT Sport has proven popular with sports fans since its launch almost three years ago. Well over 5m homes subscribe to the channels and the service is available in over 27,000 commercial premises.
We've led the way when it comes to new technologies and digital platforms, including the launch of BT Sport Ultra HD, our award-winning BT Sport App, and our connected red button functionality. But we want to make sure that millions more sports fans can join in, accessing content digitally, whether that's through social media, mobile devices or digital TV.
BT Sport - bringing sport back to the people
We've always said we wanted to give top quality sport back to the people and making this season's UEFA Champions League and Europa League finals available to everyone in the UK did this in a big way.
We screened both finals on the Freeview BT Sport Showcase channel. But we didn't stop there. As part of a wider digital strategy, the matches were shown live on YouTube - the first time the ultimate game in club football has been streamed live on a social media platform. This brought the games within reach of millions of additional fans, letting us showcase BT Sport's European coverage to a huge audience and maximise the numbers who could tune in.
We wanted to make the finals our most social sports broadcasts so far, with lots of exciting content in the build-up and on the match nights across YouTube, Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter:
- The matches were shown live at youtube.com/btsport and bt.com.
- Snapchat Live Story provided 'behind the scenes' footage from the San Siro stadium in Milan.
- Facebook's 'Live' platform was used for interactive interviews with BT Sport pundits and former UEFA Champions League winners, Rio Ferdinand and Owen Hargreaves.
- Exclusive images were published on Instagram.
- Live action clips were published via @btsportfootball on Twitter, exclusive footage was posted into Twitter Moments, and Twitter followers were able to vote for their Man of the Match.
6m Champions League final viewers, across all platforms
Real Madrid's narrow victory over Atlético Madrid in the UEFA Champions League final was watched by 6m people across TV and social media platforms. The audience reach across BT Sport Europe and BT Sport Showcase was 4.3m. On top of this, 1.8m watched live on digital platforms – bt.com, BT Sport App and YouTube. Over 2m on demand clips/highlights were watched across social media – Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Around 5m tuned in to the Europa League final across BT Sport Europe and BT Sport Showcase. On top of this, over a million people watched live on digital platforms and over 1m on demand clips/highlights were watched across social media.
A new era of live and interactive sports broadcasting
By combining TV and digital media, BT Sport made the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League finals our most widely available and social broadcast ever and we'll continue to look for new and innovative ways to bring top quality sport to more people across the full range of platforms that viewers are now using to consume content.