skip to main content
Close Icon We use cookies to improve your website experience.  To learn about our use of cookies and how you can manage your cookie settings, please see our Cookie Policy.  By continuing to use the website, you consent to our use of cookies.
Global Search Configuration

Straight Talk Media & Entertainment

I had the pleasure of chairing a debate about the future of sports content at Cable Congress a couple of weeks ago. As you'd expect from a panel that included executives from broadcasters AMC and Discovery, specialist ad agency Fuse Sport + Entertainment, and sports discovery app Thuuz, we had a wide-ranging conversation. Here are my top three takeaways.

Sports have an in-built resilience other entertainment brands can only envy. A key point of discussion was how sports can evolve as consumer tastes and technology continue to change. Sports have an advantage in that the franchises and broadcasters that control TV rights are not the only brands that matter. Just as important – or perhaps more so – are the teams and players. These parties will play an increasingly key role in extending and evolving a sport's overall appeal, particularly as social and mobile technologies enable them to reach and engage with new and existing audiences directly.

Young sports fans will differ  in more ways than one. We also discussed how sports TV can remain relevant to younger consumers as new distractions compete for their attention. Ovum data suggests that this challenge presents more of an opportunity than a threat, with sports fans more likely to be regular users of chat apps, social networks, and other digital applications than your average consumer. Service providers should not generalize, however. Young adulthood spans a huge period of change, with disposable income, access to technology, and other factors affecting how kids can engage with premium media such as sport dramatically within just a few years.

E-sports have a bright future, but perhaps not on traditional TV. The panel was enthusiastic in its support for competitive video gaming, also known as e-sports. But some participants suggested that its appeal would not translate from the digital world to traditional TV channels. Why? Services such as Amazon's Twitch and Google's YouTube Gaming already offer a superior experience, with interactive features more suited to this networked genre. But more importantly, today's fans are unlikely to look to TV channels to find e-sports coverage, and TV channel-surfers are unlikely to become fans after simply chancing upon the content.

Straight Talk is a weekly briefing from the desk of the Chief Research Officer. To receive this newsletter by email, please contact us.

Recommended Articles


Have any questions? Speak to a Specialist

Europe, Middle East & Africa team - +44 (0) 207 017 7700

Asia-Pacific team - +61 (0)3 960 16700

US team - +1 646 957 8878

Email us at

You can also contact your named/allocated Client Services Executive using their direct dial.
PR enquiries - Call us at +44 788 597 5160 or email us at

Contact marketing -

Already an Ovum client? Login to the Knowledge Center now