ESPN’s debut at NewFronts!

By Paola Rovelo Senior Partner, Director

With National Anti-Bullying Day taking place tomorrow, it felt appropriate that Olympic freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy took the stage at yesterday’s ESPN NewFront event to talk about his work with the X Games on the Shred Hate campaign to eliminate bullying.

What caught my eye

The big content and news was really around ESPN’s SportsCenter franchise, and how it’s
being re-imagined for a younger audience who prefers mobile-first, short-form content; how the franchise is being designed for immediate social distribution. ESPN announced the launch of a new app-only edition of SportsCenter, to be featured every morning on people’s home screens upon first opening the app every day. And following on the announcements made at Twitter’s NewFront event earlier this week, ESPN also discussed SportsCenter Live,
a Twitter take on its flagship program that leverages Twitter Moments.

At their NewFront, ESPN also announced three more new shows with Twitter: Hoop Streams, The College Football Show, and Rankings Reactions. It’s clear that the network is making a bet on consumers’ interest for custom content on this social platform.

Previously, Mindshare has talked about how advances in streaming technology and the demand for live programming have given viewers access to more sporting events than ever before. ESPN is more overtly making its content available across platforms and channels, particularly re-imagining their programming for a mobile generation. But notably, before the NewFront, ESPN had also unveiled the ability for consumers to automatically access live sports (both mainstream & niche) with their announcement of ESPN+, an OTT service for $4.99/month.

What makes this NewFront different from the types of deals we drive with partners every day?

Itenabled our clients to see more first-hand of the long-term strategy for these partners, and get a sneak peek of the grand plans in the pipeline.