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MLS side DC United reveal Facebook Live plans as part of strategy to better understand fans


By Tony Connelly | Sports Marketing Reporter

June 1, 2017 | 4 min read

Major League Soccer (MLS) side DC United have they will begin showing their linear pre and post-game shows on Facebook Live.

The content, which has until now been produced for TV, will be shown on DC United’s Facebook page after the club partnered with software company Telestream’s Wirecast platform to help live stream on Facebook.

Samantha Perrie, video producer for DC United, said: “We’re a small crew and our department does a lot of different things; we do social, we do PR and we do video.

DC United

DC United will begin streaming their pre and post game content on Facebook Live

“I was tasked with finding the right platform for us to stream live shows, something that would allow us to produce professional quality content for our fans. After a thorough search, we found Wirecast, took it for a test drive and knew it was what we were looking for.”

The streams will include interviews with players and coaches, analysis, and various other pieces of non-match exclusive content.

A major factor in the decision to simulcast the content on Facebook has been to reach fans attending the games who want to watch build-up or reaction of matches on their phones. It will also allow the club to engage more with fans during periods when conversation is typically higher.

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Still the move contrasts a growing trend among football clubs who are trying to channel their social audiences on to owned platforms where they can retain all the data and generate advertising revenue.

However, DC United believe that the audience learnings available through Facebook Live’s insights tool will give it a deeper understanding of its fanbase when compared to the metrics which traditional linear broadcast offer.

By using Facebook Live the club can see how long it takes fans to tune in to a live broadcast, how many viewers a broadcast has at its peak, how many viewers are staying, when they’re dropping off and many more metrics.

The move follows on from a wider league trend of more US soccer being shown on Facebook Live. In March, the MLS announced a partnered with broadcaster Univision to deliver at least 22 regular season games on Facebook Live as well as producing more than 40 ‘Matchday Live’ analysis shows exclusively for the platform.

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