Snapchat partners with NBC for Olympics content

Steven Loeb · April 29, 2016 · Short URL:

The content won't be exclusive to Snapchat, as NBC wants similar deals with Twitter and Facebook

With Twitter winning the rights to stream NFL games, now there's another big sporting event looking to capitalize on social: the Olympics.

NBC, which has held the American broadcasting rights to the Summer Olympic Games since 1988, is sharing video from the event for the first time ever, and it has chosen Snapchat as its first partner, it has been confirmed to VatorNews. 

For the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Snapchat will have a dedicated Discover channel, which will last for two weeks and will feature clips curated by BuzzFeed. The app will also create "live stories", with content from NBC, athletes and event attendees.

Snapchat isn’t paying for this access to this content, and will share revenue from advertisements, which NBC will take the lead in selling, according to Bloomberg, which first reported this news on Friday.

Putting these clips on Snapchat makes sense for a number of reasons. First, it will help the Olympics reach a younger audience, as Snapchat is the preferred social network for younger users.

Plus, people were already planning on using Snapchat for the Olympics anyway. A study out from Crowdtap, released earlier this week, found that 18 percent of viewers said they will discuss the Olympics on Snapchat.

That included 32 percent of viewers aged 18 to 24, 19 percent of those aged 25 to 34 and 12 percent of viewers over 35.

Snapchat is also gaining huge traction in video. Just yesterday it revealed that it now sees 10 billion video views every day, more than Facebook. So if you want to reach a younger audience who likes to watch videos, Snapchat is the place to go.

We have never allowed the distribution of any game highlights off NBC’s own platforms,” Gary Zenkel, president of NBC Olympics, told Bloomberg, but he said that Snapchat “really effectively reaches a very important demographic in the United States, and is very important to our efforts to assemble the large, massive audience that will show up to watch the Olympic Games.”

There are some caveats to this deal, though.

First, it only applies to viewers in the United States, and not all of the other countries that are participating in the games. Second, the content won't be exclusive to Snapchat, as NBC is also working to strike similar deals with Facebook Inc. and Twitter, Bloomberg said. 

Third, and this applies to all networks, none of them will be allowed to actually livestream the games themselves. 

Still, this a big step forward for Snapchat. It may not be the only provider of this content, but the fact that it was included shows the growing power of the relatively young network

VatorNews has reached out to NBCUniversal for comment. We will update it if we learn more. 

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