The broadcaster is looking to capitalise on the expected commercial windfall the tournament is expected to generate as analysts predict a 5.4 per cent jump in its TV revenue next year. It is bolstering its advertising proposition around second-screen initiatives in the coming months to take advantage of what it says will be an increase in brands wanting to “own moments” in real-time around the matches.
It is using the learnings gained from streaming service ITV Live to refine its new “mobile first” site that will allow fans to watch live games, access behind-the scenes content as well as share views with one another. The broadcaster claims upcoming features will allow advertisers to access the “minority of fans unable to watch live games on TV” – which they were not able to do in the past.
The business is also touting live ads – whereby advertisers tailor creative within minutes of it running – in an attempt to boost response rates to ads during its coverage. The broadcaster has been pushing the service primarily through its work with betting firms to date and is hoping the tournament’s mass appeal will expand the roster to all brands. The drive for interactive ads will be further fuelled by upcoming partnerships with Twitter and advertisers following the success of an Argos campaign last month. The business partnered with both companies to ask the public to pick a gift for Santa as part of a combined TV and social media Christmas marketing campaign.
Speaking at the IAB’s Brands and the World Cup forum yesterday (4 December), Cassandra Russell, senior multiplatform solutions manager, says: “Live sport coverage doesn’t mean just traditional TV anymore. Second-screen is going to be a big part of what we do around the World Cup. Potentially, adverts will react to things happening on the pitch. Using Specsavers as an example, if there’s a bad refereeing decision then we can launch creative in response to that.”
Elsewhere, ITV is testing a range of online ad formats that will allow brands to target viewers with promotions and content while they are watching its coverage on TV. The tools could potentially allow brands to create “reactive content” during games, according to the company, It will also be exploring how World Cup brands can exploit opportunities around its suite of apps, but says there are no plans to develop a tournament app of its own.
ITV plans to work with advertisers on branded content ranging from Vine videos to online productions featuring its own pundits and YouTube stars.