In-Progress and Post-Match Video Highlights from ESPN FC, Live Matches on WatchESPN featured in Google Search
ESPN announced today that in-progress and post-match highlights from ESPN FC and live matches on WatchESPN for the 2014 FIFA World Cup will be featured on Google for relevant game, team, and tournament searches. Searchers coming to Google looking for information on the World Cup are often looking for video replays of exciting moments of the tournament and where to watch matches live. With this new integration, searchers will be able to access links to ESPN FC for highlights right after they happen during the game across computers, smartphones and tablets. Additionally, links to live matches on WatchESPN will be featured in search queries with the intent to watch a live World Cup match. The agreement with ESPN marks the first fresh in-game video highlights integration for sports on Google Search.
“As befits the world’s biggest sporting event, ESPN and Google are teaming up for the first time to make ESPN FC video highlights available instantly to millions of fans and to make it easier to find live games on WatchESPN within Google Search,” said John Kosner, Executive Vice President, ESPN Digital and Print Media. “It is the latest example of how ESPN leads the marketplace with powerful digital solutions that delight fans and excite advertisers.”
“We are delighted to work with ESPN to bring fans video highlights during live matches through Google Search,” said Anjali Joshi, Vice President, Product Management. “People come to Google for answers and information, and giving them direct access to the biggest moments throughout the World Cup tournament is a great user experience.”
During the tournament, search results from World Cup-related queries will feature a fresh detailed timeline of match stats during the game – including goals, penalties, red cards and more – within Google Search. Within the timeline, the biggest moments will feature companion video that users can view on ESPNFC.com shortly after they happen. Additionally, live matches on WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app will be featured within searches specific to watching live World Cup matches. Videos will be available to users of Google.com or the Google Search app located in the United States.
More GREAT News
America is ready to catch World Cup fever early in 2014.
ESPN’s opening broadcast of the Brazil-hosted tournament, between the host nation and Croatia, drew a 3.2 overnight rating. That’s up 52% from the South Africa-Mexico opener in 2010 (which drew a 2.1 overnight rating). ESPN has only been keeping overnight figures since 1998, but that marks the best overnight rating ever for the opening match on ESPN.
The match, which was marred by controversy, drew higher ratings than either of NBCSN’s telecasts of the Stanley Cup Final.
The game also nearly topped 10 million total viewers. Univision’s Spanish-language telecast drew 5.1 million, while ESPN hit with a cool 4.4 million. For the non-math majors, that equals a cool 9.9 million viewers for the opening match.
Locally, you always wonder what markets are big for international soccer. The top 10 for ESPN were Washington (5.1), Boston (5.0), Miami (4.7), Los Angeles (4.6), New York (4.5), San Francisco (4.3), Hartford (4.3), Providence (3.9), Austin (3.9) and Orlando (3.8). A lot of very large cities with soccer cultures and big immigrant populations.
A big rating for the opening match is a good sign for the rest of the tournament, which is mostly airing when Americans on the east coast can watch. A 4 p.m. ET Thursday match getting a large audience is certainly a good sign. Welcome to another month of World Cup fever.