The Lad Bible gets into live sports broadcasting

Viral-bro publisher The Lad Bible is the latest to get into sports broadcasting, thanks to Facebook Live.

On Saturday Lad Bible is live-streaming a boxing match between unbeaten cruiserweight Sam Hyde and former Olympian Blaise Menduou from its sports offshoot the Sports Bible, which has nearly 9 million Facebook fans. This is not Lad Bible’s first foray into Facebook Live for sports, The Lad Bible live streamed a mixed martial arts fight in August that clocked nearly 500,000 views.

“There will be some theater to the event,” said Adam Clyne, chief operating officer at the publisher. “We’re working on how we can bring the glamor and entertainment associated with boxing to the live stream.”

Clyne added the stream will have the multiple camera angles and high production values. Using Facebook Live to stream sports is an area that competitor Unilad is getting into also.

Since April, the Lad Bible has done around 60 Facebook Live videos across its different verticals, which include the Odds Bible, the Food Bible and its most recent-female focused brand, Pretty 52.

One of its most popular live streams has been the battle of popsicles, a riff off the exploding watermelon. During an unseasonably hot British day in July, Lad Bible filmed four popsicles to see which melted the quickest. The 36 minute-long video has generated 6.3 million views, according to Cyne 1 million of these views were live, and 157,000 comments.

“We’re not necessarily answering life’s biggest questions here,” he notes, “but people want to be part of it. Out live videos aren’t pre-promoted, but the momentum builds so quickly.”

This week it ran a Facebook Live of an eating competition, sponsored by food-delivery app Deliveroo, which received 1 million video views in a day.

According to Clyne, who joined in June, the company has been profitable since it began four years ago. The Times reported the publisher had £7.5 million ($9.2 million) in sales last year. While there’s no brand sponsor for the boxing fight, brand deals around its sports vertical is an obvious route to revenue growth.

A large portion of the Lad Bible’s content is aggregated from the internet, it also creates its own content and publishes submissions. It jostles with Unilad and BuzzFeed’s Tasty for the top spot in the ranking for Tubular Labs most-viewed Facebook video publishers.

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