SGP27 #ThankYouSachin as Indian cricket fans say goodbye to Sachin TendulkarThis week on Sports Geek Podcast it’s Cricket season as summer hits down under and England are taking on Australia in the Ashes.  With Francis on ABC Grandstand look at mobile apps and where does audio and live play by play fit in? On Harftime we chat about YouTube, is it just for viral hits? How can sports leverage viral videos.

On this podcast you’ll find out about:

  • New Cricket Australia app with Channel Nine
  • Current stoush between ABC and CA over radio and digital rights
  • How Indian cricket fans said #ThankYouSachin
  • How YouTube clip at Celtics game helped Bon Jovi revive an old hit
  • What you can do to drive traffic from you YouTube videos
  • How the NBA had one of it’s most popular Instagram videos

Like this episode? please leave a review in iTunes.


Resources from the episode


  • Gary Vanyerchuk on big mistake on Twitter

New Sports Geek V3.0 Sneakers

New @SportsGeek sneakers were unveiled on Facebook and Instagram last week.

SGP27 Sports Geek Sneakers thanks to MiAdidas

Social Media Post of the Week

This week’s winner is the NBA for it’s quick Instagram work to get Dwyane Wade cartwheel video bomb getting twice the likes than normal posts.  Please tweet in your nominations for social media post of the week to @SportsGeek or @seancallanan.


Closing 2 Cents

Advice for YouTube or any social media viral hit

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Podcast transcription

Sean: G’day and welcome to the 27th episode of the Sports Geek Podcast. It’s summer here in Australia. That means cricket season. England’s here to take on Australian The Ashes. And we take a look at the new Cricket Australia mobile app. Where does audio fit in? And YouTube: is it just for viral hits?

DJ Joel: Welcome to the Sports Geek Podcast, the podcast built for the sports digital marketer. And now, here’s your host, who still takes IT support calls from his parents, Sean Callanan.

Sean: Thanks, DJ Joel. And thank you very much for downloading. Over 9,000 downloads that we’ve had for the podcast; 26 episodes I’ve done so far. So effectively, I’ve hit the half-year mark, so it’s a bit of a six-month milestone. Just some stats on the stats themselves. Twenty percent of those downloads are from iTunes, so there are obviously a lot of Mac users out there, and 52% from Apple Core Media, which is where I host the podcast, record. That’s effectively the podcast app.

So even though I jumped across to Android, there’s obviously a fair chunk of you that are still using iTunes because they are on Apple, and iTunes definitely is driving a stack of traffic to the podcast. One thing that is helping is the reviews that people are leaving and the fact that you are playing it in iTunes. So if you want to leave a review, I would very much appreciate it. Simply go to, and you will go to the iTunes store and you can leave a quick review. I do read them all and I’m very thankful.

On today’s show, talk cricket with Francis Leach on ABC Grandstand, look at the new Cricket Australia app, and what they’re doing in India with Twitter with the Thank You Sachin Initiative around the retirement of Sachin Tendulkar, and on Harf, I chat with him about YouTube: what goes viral, how it goes viral, and how sports can leverage it. But first, here’s my chat with Francis Leach on ABC Grandstand.

Francis: Sean Callanan, for Sports Geek from Sports Geek HQ, sport in the digital realm, each Saturday morning. Good morning, Sean. How you going?

Sean: Good, thanks, Francis. Yourself?

Francis: I’ve done well. I’ve been at the cricket. Life’s pretty good. And there’s nothing quite like The Ashes to send digital media and social media into the red zone overdrive. Isn’t it incredible?

Sean: Definitely. Definitely. I mean we spoke about it when the Australians were in England and the shared experience of following Ashton Agar when he was batting, but yeah, it just goes to another level when they’re in their own backyard.

Francis: There is also a bit of a battle going on in terms of sport being delivered on different platforms, and cricket’s right at the heart of it. And the ABC’s been at the heart of it too in terms of old-fashioned negotiating rights for radio. But new cricket apps, new platforms for content delivery and ball-by-ball description. The landscape is changing so quickly.

Sean: Yeah, I mean, I’ve been sort of tossing up this one last couple of days, thinking about what to discuss here at the ABC, and yeah, there is a bit of dispute on the rights of one, broadcasting the game, and then also where those rights sit in the digital space. Where do audio rights and the radio rights sort of sit? So at the moment, if you want to listen to ABC, you listen to it via the Cricket Australia app. And so that’s partly a play to make the Cricket Australia app be a little bit more premium. It’s a data play. You have to register to get it.

Francis: So do you have to pay for access to-

Sean: No, you don’t have to pay. You just have to sign up, so you have to offer up your email address, or sign up with Facebook or Twitter.

Francis: Can I ask, because we see a lot of that now. I know that the news delivery platforms on tablets also ask for an email address, but they ask for Facebook and Twitter handles. Why do they ask for those? How are they leveraging, say, your Facebook profile or your Twitter profile in order to get access to their content?

Sean: Well, I guess firstly, it’s a data capture mechanism. They want to get your email address to be able to communicate with you. And so, Facebook and Twitter log-ons do allow that to be far quicker and easier. Some people find it easier.

Francis: Much easier.

Sean: Much easier. The thing is when you do it with Facebook especially, you potentially are giving out more than your email because you’re giving up some of your demographic information and where you live, your age, and potentially some of the things that you like, depending on what the app asks for.

The ease of use and the convenience, you’re also paying up with more of your privacy and information about yourself. So that’s why a lot of the apps are effectively becoming a pseudo-pay wall to say, well, if you want our data, you hand over some of your information. My thinking, I was doing a little bit of looking, and Cricket’s not the only one that does this, one, the pay wall thing, but also the radio rights must be streamed through our app.

Francis: Yeah, the IFL do it.

Sean: Yeah, IFL do it as well, so it’s not pointing the finger at Cricket. But the thing is to me that, and other leagues have done it, have restricted their rights, but they’ve sort of gone by the wayside because they’ve all moved towards a video product, and they’ve said that’s the product they’re trying to go with.

So if you look at major league baseball, and the NFL, and the NBA, and we’ve had Richard Clark and the Arsenal, they’re all trying to drive you to watch the content on their device or on their platforms. Radio’s sort of in the middle, caught in the crossfire to a certain degree. I used to listen to NBA games on audio via streaming, via the NBA site, and it does make it easy if you’re fan and you don’t know where to go.

But the problem is that they’ve sort of dropped those rights and they’ve sort of tried to push everyone to a video product, which is where this Cricket Australia/Channel 9 application, it should be really trying to drive people to watch TV and subscribe to that product.

Francis: Does it deliver live visual streaming of the games? At a price?

Sean: Yes. At a price. So I think it’s $20, which is relatively cheap.

Francis: For the whole summer?

Sean: For the whole summer I think it is. And again, I should have checked. So you can watch it live, Channel 9, on your phone. Again, the other problem, because it’s now a Channel 9 and Cricket Australia application and not a Telco, you have to pay for the streaming of that video.

Francis: And that’s important because then you start to pay huge download rates for it and it chews up your data allowance, whereas I think the AFL or one of them had a direct relationship with TelSure, so what the action there was if you subscribe to TelSure, so for your iPad or tablet subscription, then you get un-metered access . . .

Sean: Correct.

Francis: . . . so they partner up that way to try to drive in a win/win situation.

Sean: Yeah, so that’s where it’s a little bit of a battle. Are you going to open up your phone and watch it while you’re on the tram and chew through your data and not be able to do things at the end of the month? To me, I think when you’re building a mobile app you need to have a strong sense of purpose, and to me, at the moment audio seems to be throwing to make a stronger feature set, and really all they’ve done is upset a rusted-on fan base in the ABC-land.

Whereas they should be building an app that says, “Oh, it’s alerted me there’s a wicket. I’ve got to turn on the TV or I’ve got to open up and watch that clip of that wicket.” You know, have a really strong focus, and at the moment, that’s what I don’t think it has, because there are lots of apps out there. And especially from a mobile point of view, you want to be able to get in and out, get all the scores, get all the updates, and get the thing in 30 or 40 seconds.

Francis: Particularly a sport like cricket where it’s played over a long time, so there might be an hour or two where there’s nothing happening of specific interest. But if you’re given a notification that pops up on your phone saying wicket’s fallen, you can go bang, straight over, see the video cut and you continue to have access to the narrative of the game and be involved.

Sean: Yeah, and I guess that’s the challenge because there will be multiple apps. There’s the Cricket Info app. The ACB have got their own app. You’ve got Cricket Australia. There’s multiple options for the fans, so you’ve got to provide something of difference whether it’s A, we’re pitching this as a TV companion while you’re watching, or we’re pitching this as you are overseas and you want to watch the game, then you would pay for that product.

At the moment, I think, at least in the Australian space, they’re trying to put as many things in the app as themselves, when really it would be better to have everyone who listens to the cricket on ABC Grandstand to be able to consume it as they do every other part of the day, and get them engaged in social and get them to watch the TV. Because if they watch the TV, they’ll find out about the app and they’ll find out the app has these extra features that adds to that experience and not just replaces, if you’re not at a TV.

Francis: Sean, another sort of social media phenomenon was saying goodbye to Sachin Tendulkar, and the BCCI in India, given his enormous profile, basically ran their goodbye campaign via Twitter.

Sean: Yeah, it was a strange one. Yeah, I think it’s probably still turned on. If you send a tweet to BCCI with the hashtag, #ThankYouSachin, you would get a tweet in return from BCCI saying, “Here you go, Francis, here’s your signed autographed photo from Sachin,” and they effectively take your name and have a little message and an autograph from Sachin.

Francis: I can see yours here. “Sean, thanks for all your support. Love and prayers, Sachin Tendulkar.” So they’ve just got an electronic autograph that they’ve applied to the photo, but what a nice touch.

Sean: Yeah, it is a nice touch. I guess the only thing is the amount of tweets that mentioned Sachin Tendulkar. It got a little bit spammy in the effect that anyone that tweets, so execution-wise, it could have been a little bit better, but for the BCCI and Twitter, who were trying to grow their game and grow the awareness of Twitter, it worked really well. Like, stacks of people are now following BCCI. The Indian fans that love their cricket and obviously bow down to Sachin Tendulkar, thought they were effectively getting a message from God.

Francis: Indeed they were!

Sean: Indeed they were. So really effective in that way.

Francis: That’ll have to go up on the office wall.

Sean: Yeah, exactly. Exactly.

Francis: At the Sports Geek HQ. Thanks for coming in again!

Sean: No worries, Francis.

DJ Joel: Sign up for Sports Geek news at

Sean: So what’s your take on live radio? Should it be something that leagues and teams should hoard away as part of their digital assets so they can fill out a mobile app? Now, this wasn’t really a direct assault or an attack of any kind on Cricket Australia. A lot of teams and leagues have done this around the world. But as everyone is moving to video, those radio rights, at least the digital forms of those radio rights, is lessening.

So to a certain degree, I’m actually leaning towards the ABC in this case. I guess the ABC is a special case in that they have a really old rusted-on demographic that were quite vocal and complaining about not getting access to it and having to go through a new app. Everything we’ve been doing around social networks, whether it be Facebook and Twitter, is always about going to where the fans are, and this is a case of taking away a platform where the fans are, and that platform is the current radio networks.

So I think the main thing would be to build an app that has reasons for the fans to be there. And so in this case, the fact that it’s a Channel 9 and Cricket partnership, they should be really pushing towards that video component, so audio just becomes an add-on in that instance. So for mine, I would be dropping audio from all apps because I don’t think it is something that fans necessarily want to be consuming in large quantities, and you don’t want that to be the only reason that they’re downloading your app.

Also, a few other notes on the “Thank you, Sachin” tweets using Digigraph, BCCI did gain 100,000 followers over a couple of days. However, they did have to tweet 150,000 times over the first three days of the campaign in replying to all the absolutely avid Indian cricket followers. My main issue is as more fans followed BCCI, more fans would have seen BCCI tweeting back to all the fans, so this is where I think it becomes very spammy.

If you don’t quite understand the idea around @replies and who sees them and that kind of thing, I’ll share a link to a slide presentation from Gary Vaynerchuk that really goes through and explains those basics of @replies and who sees them. The main issue is that anyone who follows that account will see that @reply. So in this case, as the BCCI get a bigger following, these kind of campaigns will become quite spammy.

So I think there will be some tweaks from the guys at Digigraph to sort of reduce that. But obviously it was well received. My thing is just that it was a little bit spammy.

But up next, I sent Harf an email in the morning, and it wasted his whole morning, full of YouTube clips. Here’s my chat with Harf.

Announcer: Sean Callanan, our sports digital media guru, for

Harf: Any place you want to go, it’s Sean, G’day.

Sean: G’day, Harf. How you doing?

Harf: Very well, thank you. Very well indeed. So tell me about YouTube. You sent me an email this morning with a lot of clips that I spent a lot of time watching, and diverting into other clips as well.

Sean: It is a bit of a time-waster. I guess, yeah, some of the opportunities that are there from a sports point of view, getting your content out to that platform, because it is the platform that people want to consume their video with. Yeah, some really good examples just in the last week that have sprung up virally out of YouTube in the world of sports, the first one was, and you might have seen it, it was a Boston Celtics fan dancing in the stands to Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer.”

Harf: Yes. Yes. My word, I’ve seen that.

Sean: That’s an old video. Someone actually just picked it up, built a bit of a site around it, and it started seeding it with Facebook and different social networks. And it’s got that many views in the last about ten days that Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer” has re-entered the Top 100 Billboard in the US.

Harf: No way!

Sean: So it just shows the, I guess the power of the viral video. And it is a very tough brief. Someone comes along and says, build us a viral video, that is a very, really tough brief to do. But what you’ve got to do is keep producing content that has the opportunity to go viral, and then take advantage of it.

Harf: Yeah.

Sean: So, another one that’s gone viral in the last week is the Detroit Pistons’ dance team with the kid and the Dancing Usher. The Dancing Usher is a guy that dances each week at the Pistons’ facility. You can follow him on Twitter, @TheDancingUsher.

Harf: I’ll be right back.

Sean: But that was a bit of a dance-off, and again, that’s gone viral. It’s sort of gone everywhere, but what they didn’t do is said, oh, come back to the Detroit Pistons and buy a ticket, or promote the rest of their content. They just sort of let it go.

Harf: Opportunity missed.

Sean: Definitely an opportunity missed. But I guess the other opportunity missed, and I guess it’s partly because it’s caught up with digital rights of match footage and things like that is that there’s a lot of restrictions on a lot of teams on what they can and can’t put on YouTube because it’s not their primary channel. To me, I think that’s just a flaw with the rights holders in that they should be loosening up their rights a little bit, just to let more content breach YouTube.

I’m not talking putting full matches and full highlights and everything on there, but the more you can put on there, the more opportunities people will subscribe to your YouTube channel. You have opportunities to monetize your channel and those kind of things. But you have the opportunity to then drive these fans back to your platforms to watch your video players and watch your content. That’s the opportunity.

So if you’re looking at sports and YouTube, a lot of it is non-match footage, unless it’s a league-based thing, so the NBA will put out small snippets on YouTube, again, to allow it to go viral to make it easy to share.

Harf: But isn’t the best way to do it, to get the viral stuff going, is to make it a little bit quirky, a little bit left of center? The NBA have done that recently with the Jingle Hoops one where all the stars are shooting, the nets have been tuned with bells, and they play “Jingle Bells” and everything like that.

Sean: Yes, exactly. So it does fit for that quirky video, and advertisers are doing it all the time. So they’re not worried about where the content goes. They just want the content out there. You would have seen the Jean-Claude Van Damme epic splits Volvo commercial?

Harf: Volvo, yeah, yeah.

Sean: They put that up. It’s got 51 million views so far on YouTube. That’s far better than… we haven’t seen it on Australian TV, but a lot of people in Australia would have seen it.

Harf: YouTube.

Sean: And the thing is if you’re agile enough from a sports team point of view, you can leverage that kind of thing. The Dallas Mavericks grabbed the Van Damme video, they put Mark Cuban’s face on Jean-Claude Van Damme, and they branded up the trucks and they put it out to their fans. And they got, I think, 30,000 views. But again, their fans were like, “Hey, that’s cool. You’ve taken your own take on that content.” That’s the opportunity then. When you do get it, it’s a matter of hey, send the people back to your site to buy tickets, and all that kind of stuff. That’s the opportunity.

Harf: That’s how you use YouTube. That’s why it is a great forum for that type of thing. If you want to find out how better to use it, particularly if you AFL clubs, and NRL clubs, and [A-league] clubs are listening, go to and you will find out how to get into contact with Sean. Thanks, Sean.

Sean: Cheers, mate.

DJ Joel: Check out which teams work with Sports Geek at

Sean: There you go. I’ll have links to all of those YouTube clips in the show notes so you too can waste about an hour watching some really cool YouTube clips.

Three steps that you need to do when you do get a viral video. You definitely want to annotate. Use the annotations in YouTube to add a prompt to subscribe to your channel and/or a link to some of your other, better videos. If you can keep people on your channel for longer, then obviously the likelihood that they will stay and connect with your content is obviously better.

The second one is a little bit of a Sports Geek trick and a little bit of a hack, is to add a call to action on your video that effectively puts an advert on your video back to your properties. So in the case of the Detroit Pistons, they could put an ad on their video that says, “Buy a Detroit Pistons Game Pass,” whatever it is. They’ve had 7 million views. They could have had a few click-throughs to buy some tickets.

The way you go about doing that, because you don’t have a call to action on a video naturally, promote the video with a Google ad campaign. You can do it for a dollar. Once you set up a video to be promoted, because you’re paying Google to promote that video, you get the option to put your own call to action, which is drive back to your site. Now, go back to the campaign, you can pause that campaign. You do not have to actually pay that dollar.

So there you go. I’ve given you a trick and I’ve saved you a dollar. But it does allow you to have that call to action back to your site. I’ll link to one of the Sports Digital Revolution videos that I’ve had up for a while that has a link back to Sports Geek.

And then the other thing is, and I’d say a lot of teams miss the boat on this, is add links in your description back to your properties, back to the website article that it was from, back to your social properties, to your mobile apps. Again, if it’s getting a lot of eyeballs, give them a place that they can go. You can do that once you find out that a video is going to go viral.

But what can you do before that? Always remember your branding. As I said on Harf Time, I didn’t think the Detroit Pistons video had enough Detroit Pistons on it. If you didn’t know it was the Pistons, you just saw it in your feed, you wouldn’t know. So always make sure that whether it’s pre- and post-, or TV bugs kind of things, on the video make sure people know that it’s your video.

Make YouTube a viable channel. Yes, I understand the rights holders and the restrictions that most teams have, and most people use it as a secondary channel, but make sure it’s a viable channel, make sure you keep putting content through it. It’s something that you really want to be active with your Google+ page and really connect those two up. And always promote that subscription option. If you get someone to subscribe, they will get it reminded with emails followed up via YouTube, and it starts keeping in their stream of videos they should be looking at.

And as I said before with annotation, it is your friend. The more videos you can annotate, the more you can link. Some channels do it very well. I really liked the work that Grantland did with its previews. I thought it was a really great job. And speaking of viral videos, stay tuned, a little over a week a side project if you’ve been following my Twitter you would have seen hashtag SAMP or #SuperAwesomeMicroProject. Check out It’s a project that I’ve done with 40 other people. I’m a patron of it.

We’ve come up with a follow-up project to the Lego space shuttle and I’m really excited about it. We taped it earlier today and the video will be out soon, so keep an eye out for it. I hope that it will go viral and we’re doing everything that we can to do that. That clock there is to remind me to dedicate this episode, Episode 27.

You can get the show notes at I had a lot of good nominations. Glen Jakovich from the West Coast Eagles and the AFL. Carlton Fisk from Major League Baseball. Steve Atwater from the NFL. Even Casey Stoner, Australian’s own MotoGP champ. But I could not go past this nomination, just so I could say his name. Zaza Pachulia. That’s right. Two Z’s. That’s how we say it in Australia. I’m dedicating this episode to NBA basketballer, Zaza Pachulia.

This week’s social media post of the week, I really like the fact that the NBA really got on this very quickly. Dwyane Wade did a cartwheel video bomb and the NBA rather quickly put it up as an Instagram video, and it got twice as many likes as other posts. So it really shows the viral nature of Instagram and the fact that if you can get that video up very quickly, you will be rewarded.

This week’s Sounds of the Game again is from the NBA. Russell Westbrook hit an absolutely stunning game-winner the other night against Golden State, and kudos to the NBA, talking about YouTube earlier. Kudos to the NBA. They actually showed that clip on YouTube and shared it on social networks, so it made it easy for that clip to go viral.

But what the Oklahoma City Thunder also did is they embraced the footage that fans took on the night, and so the Sounds of the Game this week is exactly what I want all of you to do. Take your phone out at a game and record the sounds. This fan was lucky enough to be sitting courtside at the very corner Russell Westbrook took that shot. This is what it sounded like.

[Recorded cheering and whooping]

Very cool video. I want to see more teams really embrace that fan content. It was really great to see the NBA, the Oklahoma City, not take that fan video down. And again, if you take your phone out and record some audio or some video, please me send me a clip. I’d love to include it on the show for the Sounds of the Game segment.

And that wraps up another episode of Sports Geek Podcast. Again, thank you for listening, whether you’re doing it on iTunes, Stitcher, PlayerFM. We’re uploading the back catalog up on the SoundCloud. Please let me know what platforms you’re using it on. It’s even on the Windows Phone Store.

You can always get me via Twitter, @SportsGeek or @SeanCallanan. I’d like to know when and where you’re listening to the Sports Geek Podcast. And also including the show notes, the new Sports Geek V3s, the new MyEditor sneakers that came in this week. Very happy with the third addition of the Sports Geek company shoes. Closing two cents, you don’t pick what goes viral. Just make sure you’re ready when it does.

DJ Joel: Please leave a review on iTunes. Go to Find all Sports Geek podcasts at On Pinterest? Follow Sean on Pinterest. You’re listening to the Sports Geek Podcast.