Twitter teamed up with The Football Association in the U.K. to create a direct message bot that will deliver video highlights to fans outside of the U.K. during the Emirates FA Cup soccer tournament.
Fans in over 10 markets—including the U.S., India, Thailand, Brazil, Egypt and Nigeria—who follow the Twitter accounts of Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur will see a direct message card in their timelines and in their local languages.
The initiative kicks off with the third round of the Emirates FA Cup, Jan. 4 through 7, and continues until a champion is crowned Saturday, May 18.
The DM card may also be served to some users who don’t follow those clubs’ accounts, based on content they or their followers have liked.
When users engage with the DM, it activates the DM bot, which enables them to choose their favorite team or teams. When those clubs are in action, users will receive up to four highlights clips per half, no longer than 30 seconds each, and they will be alerted via @mention notifications.
At midnight on the night of matches, two-minute highlight clips will be delivered, as will extended 10-minute highlight packages around midday the next day.
Users can share in-game clips with friends, as well as the fact that they registered, and they have full control over their subscriptions.
If teams they are following get knocked out of the tournament, they can choose to receive clips from other clubs that are still alive.
The Football Association and Twitter said they plan to expand the number of teams and the markets where this feature is available next year.
Aside from the DM bot, clips of the biggest in-game moments and highlight packages will be promoted via the @EmiratesFACup Twitter feed.
The clips are being produced by Emirates FA Cup broadcast production partner Input Media and content media agency Social Chain.
Bruna Zanin-Juresic, who works on sports partnerships for Twitter, said, “We are thrilled that fans around the world will have a new way to follow the Emirates FA Cup this season, directly through Twitter. The Football Association has always been incredibly innovative in its use of the platform, so it felt like a natural fit to partner with it to give fans unprecedented access to one of the most prestigious knockout competitions in global football.”
And The Football Association head of marketing Georgina Lewis added, “Worldwide interest in the Emirates FA Cup is greater than ever. The partnership with Twitter is vital to ensure that the competition remains at the forefront of fan engagement and ensures that fans across the world have live access to some of the biggest fixtures, regardless of their daily schedule or location. This approach fits within our overriding strategy to be innovative in delivering experiences in line with how modern fans are consuming sports media and want to engage with the competition in the future.”