Intro: ESPN is Mobile Marketer’s Mobile Publisher of the Year due to its all-round excellence in mobile content and advertising, offering an experience that is worthy of emulation.
- “The five finalists all proved quite clearly that the mobile DNA is infused throughout the organization, but ESPN got the gong for winning consistent internal buy-in, advertiser cooperation and user acceptance,” said Mickey Alam Khan, editor in chief of Mobile Marketer, Mobile Commerce Daily and Luxury Daily, New York.
- “It is this diversification of mobile content that makes ESPN’s mobile strategy so effective,” he said. “When you look at the effort that ESPN has put into enhancing the experience for feature phone users – things like free access to up-to-the-minute scores and fantasy league trackers on ESPN Mobile Web to daily video clips and highlights on ESPN Video On Demand, you see that it’s an uncompromised experience despite the form factor.
- ESPN has a cross-platform strategy, with a unique and personalized experience for each major device’s operating system. The publisher’s mobile products are built, tested and optimized for every device across all major platforms and form factors.
- Out of the nearly 10 million consumers who have downloaded the ScoreCenter application, 95 percent have personalized their user experience, proving that fans appreciate the customization.
- Branding and consistency is key, but a mobile edition should add something unique to the user experience instead of just regurgitating online content onto mobile. ESPN takes its mobile content seriously, without fear of cannibalization.
- “Mobile allows us to be present wherever, whenever sports are watched, listened to, discussed, debated, read about or played,”said Kristy Young, director of product development at ESPN.
- The company has made a serious commitment to mobile and it is most evident in the organization that is led by a 15-year ESPN veteran John Zehr who started the mobile business six years ago and was appointed general manager of mobile in 2009. There are more than 50 dedicated team members divided into product management, content, production, engineering and business operations. Additionally, ESPN Mobile has dedicated resources on the marketing, finance and ad sales teams within other areas of digital media.
- In July 2010 ESPN saw a 70 percent market share in the mobile sports mobile Web category (Nielsen).
- To ensure a viable mobile operation, ESPN’s mobile edition demonstrates how ads can exist in context with content without disrupting the user experience. With 12 million-plus monthly uniques and 70 percent share of the mobile sports category, ESPN Mobile is the clear destination of choice for sports fans. ESPN Mobile also prides itself as being an industry leader in terms of integrating advertisers into its popular content. Over the past four quarters ESPN mobile has introduced a multitude of advertiser-friendly features.
My take: ESPN seems to have it right across the board. Interesting article full of figures and best cases