Cutting-edge video technology boosts connections with parents, fans

June 18, 2018 / BasketballVolleyball

{Sponsored} In many schools and clubs, it’s not uncommon to see a parent or volunteer behind a camera or tablet recording games. But oftentimes, it can be difficult and unreliable to find someone willing to give up their time to record video, particularly for weekend tournaments or for games around the holiday season. Finding staff or volunteers is the fifth most concerning issue (out of 20 listed) for athletic directors, according to the 2017-18 State of the Industry Survey by Coach and Athletic Director.

Integrating the latest video and analytics technology gives athletic directors and coaches peace of mind with automation for the entire video production process — from filming to editing and distributing film. With the push of a button, recording can be turned on and off by a mobile device regardless of where you are standing on the field, court or rink. And sharing film is easier than ever with a link accessible from anywhere.

This automation lets parents and volunteers go from standing behind a camera to the sidelines cheering on players. Parents and fans unable to physically make it to games can tune in any time from home or work thanks to livestreaming.

For boarding schools and club teams, the ability to watch games through a livestream can be an invaluable experience.

Rachel Kellogg, assistant varsity basketball coach at Trinity-Pawling School in Pawling, New York, has seen first hand how video technology can build connections through livestreams and on-demand video.

“We started live streaming this season and the parents were ecstatic about it,” Kellogg said. “We have a lot of boys that come from all over, not just local kids. So that ability for grandparents that are 3,000 miles away to have that opportunity to see their family members play is a wonderful connection. And it’s a wonderful connection to the school.”

On-demand video allows parents to put their phones down and be in the moment watching their child play, knowing they can download games later. The on-demand video will also show views from all angles set up on the field, court or rink.

With state-of-the-art video systems such as PlaySight SmartCourts, parents and fans can view their family members on their TV screens at home as if they were watching a professional sports broadcast.

Today’s video technologies can also automatically follow the action. The PlaySight SmartTracker system uses permanently installed 4K and HD high-performance cameras around any court or field. The cameras are synced by software that controls their movement and functionality. The cameras then record all on-court action from multiple angles and feed the video in real time to any phone, tablet or computer. The camera automatically zooms in and out with the action as the ball and players move from one end to the other just like a TV broadcast would.

Fans can enjoy the same production they are used to seeing when watching sports on TV, with scoreboard integration that places the scoreboard in the corner of the screen. Some schools have even monetized these broadcasts through sponsorship or by selling recordings of games on-demand.

If you’re just starting out with video technology and are looking to build up your fan base first, you’ve already gotten the hard part out of the way: finding content.

Trinity-Pawling School shares PlaySight livestream links with its followers on Facebook and Twitter.

With the right video system in your facility, you have a built-in machine for your social media channels. Imagine having the ability to quickly grab a highlight clip from a game in progress and share it on your social media accounts, with a link to the live game. With systems like PlaySight, users can do this all from their phones within a couple of minutes.

You can create game recaps, highlights of the night and all kinds of unique content for your website or social media channels with built-in tools.

The varsity ice hockey team at Trinity-Pawling also uses PlaySight to record practices and games. With their cameras always recording, the team has managed to capture silly moments on the ice. This led to the creation of the team’s Breakfast and a Movie before Saturday practices, where the team watches a “movie” made of bloopers clips — particularly clips featuring coaches stumbling on ice or shocking goal moves. While the team only shares this content with its players, it could be a hit with fans too.

With a single investment, schools can position their video technology as a sports channel promoting their athletic programs. For example, if you’ve installed this technology on your basketball court, you now also have the capability to record other indoor sports like volleyball or wrestling.

If you have multiple teams using a SmartField or SmartCourt, remind your social media followers of your livestream times so they can tune into all of your games. Or build a page on your website to host all the live streams.

The increased engagement from fans and support from parents and alumni will build a community around your teams. With video technology set up on your field, court or rink, your online and offline community can cheer on your teams anytime from anywhere.

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