Shift has evolved.

Shift Auckland is now Digital Arts Network.

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TVNZ - Grandstand RWC 2011

With over four million in attendance, someone had to build a grandstand.

The Game Is Afoot

Rugby World Cup 2011 was arguably the biggest TV event the country will have for some time.  TVNZ needed a way to play a big part in the whole tournament while only being allowed to screen 7 (of the full 48) games live. Other competitors such as SKY TV showed all 48 games live and were expecting bumper audiences and advertising sales as a result.

TVNZ recognized the important role that digital could play to open up new opportunities to create and engage with audiences.

Our challenge was to find a way for TVNZ to play an active role during every game throughout the world cup, whether viewers were tuned in to TVNZ or not.

Connecting audiences

We built Grandstand: a collaborative content platform enabling users to share in real-time during RWC matches. By consolidating Twitter and Facebook, aggregating match information, game imagery, and giving users access to player backgrounds and rugby encyclopedias, fans were able to add their own commentary to the game in an engaging format. And importantly, we chose to build it as a responsive web app so it was cross compatible to more devices.

The winner on the day

By kick-off, Grandstand was the only unifying platform in existance for rugby fans all over the country. It became a centerpiece for TVNZ's rugby coverage, bringing commentators, sports personalities and the fans together. Conversation spread across social networks, news broadcasts and live game coverage organically, picking up people as we went.

By the end of the tournament, TVNZ had literally created their own grandstand - a unique and compelling experience for over 15,000 people, irrespective of how they were watching the game, even if it was on a competing channel. With digital innovation, we didn't so much redefine the boundaries, as create an entirely new media property.

TVNZ is committed to connecting New Zealanders with compelling content that can be accessed through any screen so it’s been exciting to work with the Digital Arts Network in delivering an entirely new digital platform to make that even more of a reality and supplement our traditional television offering.

Tom Cotter
GM of Digital Media, TVNZ