A little dated but thought I’d share an update on MLB’s Facebook experiment, which ended last month.
According to Bob Bowman (pictured right) from MLB Advanced Media (MLBAM), the service was successful in generating interest in baseball, but it was not a great conversion tool for generating MLB.tv subscribers.
“So, MLB has since stopped the live streaming service, which to me seems a bit short-sighted. If the program was having a positive impact on promoting and generating interest in baseball, then instead of ending the program, maybe fine-tune it. As Jackie Cohen from AllFacebook.com pointed out, maybe the main reason for the low conversion numbers was because the only games being shown were spring training. It would have been very interesting to see if the conversion data jumped based off a opening week trial run (I believe the NHL offered their GameCenter Live product for free during the first week of the regular season to generate new subscribers). Unfortunately, we have no way of knowing this now.”
Furthermore, in his statement, Bob Bowman mentioned that most people ended up clicking over to the MLB website to watch the games, rather than use the embedded player on Facebook, and this contributed to the decision to remove the live stream.
My question to Bowman would be why did MLBAM not allow Facebook fans to watch the embedded live stream in full-screen mode? Allowing that feature would have enhanced viewer experience and as a result kept fans watching at Facebook instead of clicking over to the MLB website.