10.25.22

How to Reach Wider and more Inclusive Sports Audiences with Real-time AI Voice

Summary:

  • The sporting world of fans is massive, crossing different cultures and platforms for consumption. 
  • Audio listeners are more engaged than other sports consumers, but many sports are limited in the languages they broadcast in; Voice enables teams, leagues, federations, and sports data platforms to be more inclusive
  • AI voice can help the sports industry offer content in multiple languages in different people’s voices, such as players, famous broadcasters, and more.

Sports reaches nearly every culture and country around the world. For example, football, or soccer in the US, has approximately 3.5 billion fans worldwide, almost half the world’s population. The top five sports in the world have a billion fans or more, and the following five sports to round out the top ten have 400 million fans or more.

However, despite the proliferation of platforms and streaming services these audiences use to watch sports, audio listenership of sports remains one of the most far-reaching. And fantasy sports and sports betting have driven multi-platform listenership, particularly with audio. With the advent of AI voice technology, sports brands and advertisers can reach these audiences at scale in their preferred language.

How AI Helps Reach a More Engaged Audience

Many sports fans use multiple devices to obtain information about players, games, and more. A significant driver of device usage is fantasy sports players and bettors, accounting for 70 million US adults alone. These audiences also tend to listen to audio rather than TV or other sports viewing.

In fact, people that play fantasy sports are 86% more likely to listen to an audio feed rather than view a game, and 48% are more likely if they seek sports information through a smartphone. These audiences are almost naturally more engaged with the audio feed than someone watching a game on TV or another device.

According to Cumulus Media Chief Insights Officer Pierre Bouvard said, “While the sports TV audience is more casual, the play-by-play sports listener is leaning in and more engaged with the content.” And for that reason, these types of sports fans are highly sought after by advertisers, which is a boon to audio broadcasters and play-by-play providers. But to ensure the widest cast net possible, they must provide the audiences with more than text and visual-based content, ergo voice, and different language options.

Multilingual Play-by-Play Audio

But as you can imagine, reaching all these audiences means offering the content in a format that provides the listener with choices to consume it. For instance, until recently, NFL games were only broadcasted in English, but now the league has expanded into Spanish. But the United States, like any other country in the world, has a diverse population that speaks various languages. English and Spanish are the top two in the United States and the world’s top five most-spoken languages.

However, audio content must be offered in multiple languages to reach 100% of the world’s most engaged sports audiences. AI voice technology can now be more easily achieved at scale than in the past. And it also has another advantage. AI technology can now produce realistic-sounding voice clones of famous broadcasters, players, or celebrities. With the approval of the voice owners, people can listen to the play-by-play of their favorite team in their language and in the voice of a specific person –– in real-time. 

That’s why Veritone recently partnered with Stats Perform, a leading sports data and analytics company. They will provide play-by-play content in various voices and languages using AI voice via Veritone Voice to serve these highly engaged sports audiences. In addition, as more people use multiple devices to engage with sport content, AI will ensure that no matter where someone is or what language they speak, they can stay in the know with their favorite players and teams. 

Learn more about this offering.