This weekend the World Racquetball Tour and the Ladies Professional Racquetball Tour where both in action and they were both streaming live.
I like that the LPRT is working hard to get their content online. Livestream is the platform that they are trying to use, and in some instances it works well, because the service notifies you on your phone that a stream is live, allowing for views on the go.
With that said, there were numerous times where it became frustrating because the feeds would cut out or there was a need to reset for each individual match. Whether it was a matter of the hardware the LPRT is using or enough high speed service, it's not quite clear. But either way, what tends to happen is it becomes time consuming and off-putting because fans that really want to watch and support the tour get stuck in a cycle of continuous "let me check again" to see if the issues are resolved. Fans with a passing interest will just stop trying all together. If this platform is going to be used going forward, it might be fruitful to nail down hardware capabilities and go a bit beyond just checking if the host club has internet access available. It's basically a product and how it looks consistantly is important for marketers.
Right now, until issues are truly solved, it might be more advantageous to record the matches, (just like you where streaming,) and post them quickly on to a YouTube or Vimeo channel, making it seamless for the fan or those with a passing interest. If it doesn't stream right, the advantage of having the matches immediately available after on Livestream goes out the window.
On the other side of the country, the WRT was up and running pretty well. I like that this tour makes it easier for tournament directors to host, because the events are cheaper to produce. That has a residual effect in that it makes it easier to scope out venues that make video easier to grab. I really liked the quality of the video, which can contribute to longer watch rates.
The WRT has also committed to dropping there matches on Youtube, which is great for the diehard racquetball fan, who will take their time sitting down to view full matches. If you check out their channel, they have around 35 full matches available to view. They've been posting stuff on that channel for about a year, and regularly started with full matches about 5 months ago.
The above video is great for fans. If you scroll down to their very first video, you will see it's also a recap video. It's interesting that they started with this type of thing and got distracted by other types of videos, because these videos are probably the best way to grab market attention quickly and build increasing interest. They only currently have two of these things up. I kind of understand what things look like logisitcally for them in that they have a small yet creative team and they tend to be very tight with time. Their promotional production is nice making it cool for the regular viewer, but I think it would be better for the tour if they traded some of those efforts and the player profiles for the recap. (The player info can be creatively included.) Let those things draw eyeball time. Short, sweet and engaging.