Athlete content platform AthletesVoice has launched a new online TV series called AthleteTV (ATV).
The brand-funded video series is created in partnership with Facebook and will be distributed on both Facebook Watch and Instagram's IGTV.
“The reality right now is that our athletes have been stood down without pay or on reduced pay, sports lovers have little to watch, and brands have lost opportunities for engagement with this valuable audience," AthletesVoice and The Roar CEO Kerry McCabe says.
"There are only so many trick-shot challenges, re-runs and greatest ever lists we can all take. We decided to work with these stakeholders and Facebook to create and evolve a product to enrich the lives of sports lovers who number seven million plus.
"We want to help fill the content void and support athletes through what will be a quite different sports industry and media landscape in the future.”
ATV bring real perspectives from inside the private worlds of sports stars, creating new opportunities for fan, athlete and brand engagement at a time when human connection is paramount.
Each of the 48 episodes set to air in Season One will bring a hand-picked group of elite athletes together with a focus on the "human behind the headline".
Episodes will feature talent representing multiple sports, both team and individual, based in Australia and abroad.
Audiences will get to ask their favourite athletes questions, see them share their most valued personal possessions and learn how they are staying sane at home.
“Right now we’re all craving more personal connections in our daily lives. ATV can hopefully serve as a great companion during this time and we’re excited for Facebook Watch and IGTV to help create some much-needed connection around this content," Facebook ANZ Sports Media Partnerships Karren Rogers says.
The first episode is sponsored by Procter & Gamble’s Pantene.
It features Australian netballer, Liz Ellis, taking on the challenge of managing the entertaining dynamics and banter between Boyd Cordner, Helen Housby, Dan Carter and Michael Cheika.
“Sport, and everything it represents for millions of Australians, remains an extremely valuable territory for us, even while sport itself is forced to take time-out," Procter & Gamble assistant brand manager Stephanie Doyle says.
"By partnering with some of the biggest and most influential names in sport, ATV provides a strong, clear and well-timed opportunity for us to connect with Australians around the key messages of our #weareunbreakable campaign, in a format that is authentic for its audience.”
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