La Vida Baseball is poised to continue growing their Latino beisbol lifestyle media company muy rapido together with Minute Media. LVB (@LaVidaBaseball) was launched in 2017 and is owned by TeamWorks Media in Chicago. Today, they announced a new partnership with Minute Media on a multi-year deal to leverage the latter’s technology platform to increase LVB’s daily and premium video content reach and exposure across a variety of channels. Minute Media owns the likes of digital media brands such as The Players’ Tribune, Fansided, 90min and The Big Lead, who all use their proprietary publishing platform and tools to distribute original and syndicated content just like hundreds of other partners do. The Sports Techie community blog chatted with Jay Sharman, TeamWorks Media CEO, about expanding access for the US Hispanic population to LVB’s daily baseball, original video and social media content through existing partnerships with the use of publishing technologies designed to grow properties. Even though the 2020 MLB season is delayed or may even be canceled because of COVID-19, one in five Americans is Latino making this a “chocolate and peanut butter opportunity,” according to Sharman during a stagnant U.S. economic time.
La Vida Baseball Niche Community
La Vida Baseball reaches more than six million English-preferred U.S. Latino fans per month. Jay feels like his niche community is actually a good fit with advertisers when often online communities are not large enough to scale. The reason being is LVB is a deeper and richer community with more value, more influence and more connectivity, to US Latino baseball fans.
“Our content offering continues to grow as the discussion around baseball does not stop, and working with Minute Media allows us to continue to expand our significant reach and our business relationships,” said Sharman. “The team at Minute Media knows how to engage and grow diverse communities through top-of-the-line publishing tools and technology, and we are excited to reach that wider audience in partnership with them.”
La Vida Baseball has a popular assortment of on-air personalities tallying over one million fans on social media. La Vida Baseball produces several social media series featuring La Vida Baseball ¡Live!, the company’s weekday interactive, fan-centric live show, hosted by Jennifer Mercedes (@Chica_Deportes). El Bullpen is their daily, short-form cultural video round-up, hosted by Julie Alexandria (@JulieAlexandria). Being Guillén, showcases both a funny weekly show and podcast hosted by former World Series Champion manager, Ozzie Guillén and two of his sons, Ozzie Guillén Jr. and Oney Guillén. This trio has quickly grown into becoming one of the most watched shows involving baseball culture – globally. Ozzie Guillén Jr. recently launched Gaming with The Guilléns, a live, engaging Twitch gamer experience where Guillén Jr. challenges Major Leaguers to play him in the video game “MLB The Show.” Finally, Home Plate, is their newest video series celebrating food and lifestyle, hosted by Ms. Jennifer Mercedes and Ms. Julie Alexandria.
Minute Media Publishing Tech
LVB’s partnership enables Sharman’s management team to utilize Minute Media’s platform and publish from a single video solution in order to distribute daily content using a fast player loaded with monetization functionalities such as advertising. The technology also allows for customized content offerings.
One of the most advanced feature sets are the contextual matching technology algorithm and AI components that when paired with Minute Media’s library and player technology, assists publishers rise up in a crowded space such as sport.
The large bump in expanded reach for LVB’s premium, daily video and content is a sports biz match for their editorial team. The partnership aims to reach then engage the robust American Latino baseball fan audience, numbering near 20 million.
“The digital content platform that La Vida Baseball has built fits a wide variety of consumers, including a focus on [US hispanics], a continued growth area for us as a business,” said Rich Routman, President and CRO at Minute Media. “With our publishing platform, including our online video technology, we’re confident we’ll help LVB tap into audiences they haven’t been able to reach before.”
Over the last week, LVB started implementing a Minute Media bundle of technologies consisting of a CMS, website, video platform, engagement tools and reporting capabilities powering LVB growth over a variety of channels while emphasizing organic SEO growth.
Sports Techie, I was curious whether a La Vida Baseball exit strategy involved a buy out by Minute Media since they already own so many impressive sports and lifestyle digital brands. Jay feels like since day one LVB have been in build mode with the goal to be financially sound which allows a startup to have the options to do whatever you want to do. His goal was not to flip, La Vida, rather it was and still is to build a Latino company that specializes in baseball. Jay is extremely proud of the LVB team and that each has a voice in the culture of beisbol.
LVB’s sweet spot is not talking about the 3-2 pitch in the ninth inning, rather it is more about the Latino angle of baseball whether that be with the game, gaming, food or fashion. An example he shared was the Houston Astros sign stealing story of the year (decade) and how it was going to affect future Latino managers since it involved Joey Cora when he was an Astros’ bench coach and also the Boston Red Sox manager. Does sign-stealing set back the chance to manage in the Big Leagues for those of Latino decent as it did for Carlos Beltran when the NY Mets fired him before he even coached a single game?
This new partnership between LVB and Minute Media is all about harnessing their expertise to engage, enlighten and delight the passionate Latino community to win the corazon and mind of each fan followed by sponsors and advertisers.
Build it and they will come, LVB has been built and Minute Media is the digital publisher with tools to deliver compelling content in both English and Spanish to the American mass of passionate Latino beisbol fans across the nation.
Fans worldwide cannot wait for the return of MLB and college baseball all the way down to Little League. Let’s hope it is sooner not later for La Vida Baseball and Minute Media.
From a half Ecuadoran, lifetime baseball fan, buena suerte.
See you later sportstechie in Seattle, Atlanta and around the world!
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