How to boost the audience of a sport video platform by socialization tools

What does socialization give to users?

Since the early 2010’s, streaming services have spread and users have begun to subscribe to them for sports content, among other things. In 2021, 54 % of viewers chose streaming services for watching sports. In Europe the rate was lower, at around 20–30%, yet almost half of all young viewers (18–24) from around the world preferred watching video online to TV.

Socialization helps us to feel that we are participating in an event

One of the first extensive researches about sports broadcasts on SLSS platforms was conducted by Han Soo Kim and Minjung Kim from The University of Mississippi. They concluded that the communication driving satisfaction while viewing derives from absorbed engagement. Sports fans want to enjoy sport games by cheering or booing for their teams or criticizing their opponents in concert with other fans (Wann, 2006).

Escape from everyday routine

When discussing communication during co-viewing sport broadcasts researchers use the term ‘flow’. Flow was defined by Csikszentmihalyi (1975) in the field of psychology to explain the moments at which individuals experience holistic immersion in a task or a process. Sport fans tend to spend time watching sport events for such flow states(Chang et al., 2018). Flow allows viewers to quickly get away from their boring, everyday routines, and this escape from reality and possibility for distraction is the primary reason for the use of video platforms in general.

Beat the loneliness

Film watching can be perceived as a shared dream and as an personal experience, while viewing of sports broadcasts isn’t as much linked with the state of an individual. As we have said, sports fans seek unity with their team and with other fans. They choose the next best picks even for matches that aren’t their favorites. This means that what they are seeking is the experience of cheering together alongside other fans. All of the above, combined with the exchange of emotions and reactions, allows viewers to beat the loneliness they have while watching alone.

Feel connected with a team

Some researchers have concluded that there is a connection between satisfaction with a certain platform and users’ well-being. Well-being has been studied in the sport management mainly in connection with attendees of sport events (e.g., Wann, Martin, Grieve, & Gardner, 2008) or sports participants (e.g., Shankar, McMunn, Demakakos, Hamer, & Steptoe, 2017). Wann (2006) claimed how and why the well-being of sport fans is associated with team identification.

Attract and entertain Gen Zers

Research shows that Gen Zers value their time more than do other generations, and are therefore very thorough in choosing what their time will be spent on, so as not to waste it.

How does this affect platforms?

A sense of belonging and successful communication induces users to return to a platform, where they have already benefited from positive emotional feedback, meaning that this positive emotion is, in turn, transferred back to the platform itself.

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