Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The World of Changing Fan Behavior at ESPN

ESPN Research & Analytics spent more than two years researching how to tailor SportsCenter for its legions of devotees in a world of changing fan behavior. The project was among the most extensive and expensive we’ve undertaken but also one of our most impactful. In June 2014, ESPN opened a brand new SportsCenter studio as well as implemented all kinds of new content and innovative features within the show.

At TMRE last year, Barry Blyn, VP Consumer Insights, at ESPN, Inc., told us about the strategy for this project.

“We work for an entertainment company. Everything we see and do seems to involve some form of entertainment,” he explained. “When we sit down with our clients, we can’t sit down with white paper and black lines. We need to do creative stuff in our deliverables, and we also need to do creative stuff in order for them to want to come to the research.”

According to Blyn, the researchers who get you into trouble are the ones that ones that pound their finger into your chest and say “No, the data says this, so this what you need to do.” That’s not the way the relationship should work, he said.

Watch the full video interview below:

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