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Barstool Sports' CEO explains why she's betting on TikTok and Instagram Live and how the pandemic is shaping the future of sports media (PENN)

Erika Nardini Barstool
  • TikTok and Instagram are having a moment, as people remain in lockdown and look for ways to connect through social media.
  • Barstool Sports CEO Erika Nardini told Business Insider in April that the rise of those visual platforms are likely one of the lasting media changes caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
  • "Visual platforms are winning," Nardini said. "Every trend that you're seeing is originating on TikTok."
  • Nardini also expects to see a big shift within sports media to personalities, who are helping draw audiences amid the absence of live sports. 
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TikTok and Instagram are having a moment, as people remain in lockdown and look for ways to connect through social media.
Barstool Sports CEO Erika Nardini told Business Insider in April that the rise of those visual platforms is likely one of the lasting media changes to be caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
"Visual platforms are winning," Nardini said. "Every trend that you're seeing is originating on TikTok. The creativity and just the personality and the weirdness ... It's a unique format. I think that's partly why TikTok is exploding."
Nardini said Barstool Sports, a digital-media brand focused on sports and entertainment, has been focusing more in TikTok and Instagram Live in recent weeks to pounce on these shifts.
Instagram Live is now the company's preferred livestreaming platform. It's been livestreaming videos there first, before posting the videos on its website or syndicating to other platforms like Periscope.
Nardini thinks Instagram is taking off as a live platform now because the livestreams feel "organic" and "intuitive" within the broader platform.
Barstool Sports has also started hiring with TikTok in mind. The company recently picked up the XFL's former social-media editor, Bailey Carlin, as well as two interns to focus on TikTok, Nardini said.
"We're really looking for talent that are going to succeed on TikTok first and foremost," she said. "That's a change."
Nardini spoke about how the global crisis is reshaping the sports media, as well. The industry has been in a holding pattern since March, when most major sports were put on hold due to the coronavirus outbreak.
With few games to broadcast and anchor, Nardini thinks sports media will rely more on on-air personalities to draw in audiences.
"There's going to be a really big move to personality," Nardini said. "Right now, there are very few news headlines and no sports to talk about. The vast majority of sports media does play-by-play coverage or sports analysis. People aren't looking for 10-times-over sports analysis. What they are looking for is personality."
Barstool Sports has a vested interest in that predicted shift being true. The company, which was built around influencers like founder Dave "El Presidente" Portnoy and Dan "Big Cat" Katz, has always bet on personality.
Nardini also said the lack of major live sports is also a huge opportunity for global and niche leagues to step into the spotlight.
"The coverage of global sports and non-traditional sports is going to increase a lot," Nardini said. "You're going to see a bunch of rights picked up."
It's already started. As people wait for sports like NBA and NHL to return, ESPN has inked a deal to air Korean baseball and sportsbooks have gravitated toward activities like table tennis to keep gamblers engaged.
Other non-traditional sports like NASCAR, which plans to air its next live race on May 17, have been racing to return to TV in the hopes of attracting people who are waiting for live sports to return.
"Whoever comes back first is going to get such an influx of attention and eyeballs and engagement, because people are so starved for sports," Nardini said.
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* This article was originally published here Press Release Distribution

Source - https://www.businessinsider.com/prime?module=article&area=summary

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