PHOTO’S 📷 at STAB (mostly Sam Moody)
ASB MAGAZINE: Did you tune into STAB HIGH this weekend? We did and despite a broadcast glitch that PPV partners Cleeng admit happened to the live broadcast, we were more than happy to shell out AUD$15 for five hours of video on demand. The time zone didn’t align well on AEST, so the VOD was an obvious way to tune in on Sunday at our own time and leisure. STAB were still streaming Stab High on-demand at the time of writing (here). There’s obvious questions around the PPV numbers, but we need to stop, pause and rewind here and appreciate this was a ‘world first’ for surfing and future iterations of STAB HIGH can only get better. To answer the question why STAB broadcast this event on PPV, you can read our full interview with Sam McIntosh HERE. The fine details. Noa Deane won and took home a cool $25k. Eithan Osborne won the highest air, and $20k. The Van’s sponsored ‘Acid Drop’ was a personal highlight and the loot was distributed evenly by legend Nathan Fletcher. Monster Energy sponsored it and got their boy Bobby Martinez on the mic. Personal highlight? Seeing little ripper Jackson Dorian running riot on his birthday and his dad, Shane Dorian commentating on Jackson’s Big Day Out. Best on Ground. Mason Ho. But to the business side of the event, the obvious questions are will it be back? What were the PPV numbers ? We caught up with STAB’s Sam McIntosh for this post event wrap.
“Our role at Stab as media is to cover and aggregate the news, but we’ve always been at our best when we’re making the news. If we can provide a platform that connects with our audience, that allows these surfers to be themselves and helps brands hit their own objectives, that feels like a pretty good place from which to operate.”
Sam: This is gonna be contradictory coming from me but is this gonna sit behind a paywall?
ASB: Went 50/50 on this, one behind the paywall, the other not.But no, this won’t rest behind a paywall. So, all eyes will see it online …. and in print!
Congrats. What was the highlight of the event?
Sam:Seeing these surfers digging the format. The unfiltered nature of it all. The beer, the breasts, the realness (sorry couldn’t use the word authenticity). It felt like surfing even though it was a long way from the ocean. We’re a really small team at Stab and we just had to wing it. Our Editor in Chief, Ashton was brilliant live announcing. Our Creative Director, Shinya Dalby had to do the graphics package for TV. Morgan Williamson took responsibility of all press. Sam Moody and Dylan Roberts worked in the broadcast team on filming equipment four times bigger than they’re used to. Stab writer Mike Ciaramella was head judge. Rick Snowden had to help set up the audio, produce, and backline for our poolside gig. I was the event director and have never even run a board riders contest.
What were the PPV numbers?
Sam:Better than we ever expected. The feedback has been really good, and it feels like those who paid are more invested in the success of the event. We wanted loyalists. We want people to be talking about highlights that not everyone saw. We still see value in great things you have to pay for.
Will STAB HIGH be back?
Sam:We learned a lot. And I think we did okay. But yeah, we’ll be back.
Why does STAB continue to push the boundaries?
Sam:This was a natural evolution of our business, more than pushing the boundaries. We’ve got a team who are very detail oriented, and who have come to understand the culture on such a granular level, that we can see where things can improve things—take the singlets. Instead of tight rashes, which no one wears in real life, we had these little creatures that were on the surfer’s individual t-shirts, on the webcasts, on the voicemails as pre-event marketing, on coffee cups, on the wall behind the waves in the pool—and all the surfers were so stoked on them. It’s stuff like that. I’m really proud of what our guys did.
Our role at Stab as media is to cover and aggregate the news, but we’ve always been at our best when we’re making the news. If we can provide a platform that connects with our audience, that allows these surfers to be themselves and helps brands hit their own objectives, that feels like a pretty good place from which to operate.
Thanks Sam. We really enjoyed it on a lot of levels.