- Amazon will air its first exclusive NFL broadcast on Saturday between the San Francisco 49ers and Arizona Cardinals.
- If the company’s NFL efforts drive Prime membership sign-ups, we should expect Amazon to further invest in sports coverage.
- Insider Intelligence analyzes this industry and several others to provide in-depth analyst reports, proprietary forecasts, customizable charts, and more. Learn more about what we offer.
Amazon has prepared a week of original NFL-themed programming airing across Amazon Prime Video, Twitch, and social media ahead of its first exclusive NFL broadcast on Saturday between the San Francisco 49ers and Arizona Cardinals.
The broadcast was included in the multiyear agreement letting Amazon livestream Thursday Night Football. (The game will still likely be available in local TV markets.) Saturday’s game will thus be an important test of Amazon’s ability to attract a large audience on its own, and it will help the NFL determine whether it should award Amazon additional broadcasting rights in the future.
Amazon has taken an aggressive approach to bringing live sports to its platforms, which in the past had helped drive Prime membership sign-ups. Along with Thursday Night Football, Amazon-owned Twitch has also made in-roads through deals with the NBA, MLS, NWHL, and Formula One.
Investing in sports rights has yielded Prime membership gains: For example, in 2019 when Amazon livestreamed select British Premier League games, the company reported the highest number of new sign-ups for Prime subscriptions in the UK since the service launched there in 2007. If the company’s efforts with the NFL similarly drive Prime membership sign-ups, we should expect Amazon to further invest in sports coverage.
Sports fans are increasingly migrating to digital platforms, which could threaten one of the last value propositions of traditional pay TV. In 2020, the number of US digital live sports viewers will grow 14.2% to 36.5 million, or 11.0% of the population, according to our estimates.
Similarly, sports-oriented OTT services have grown substantially this year; we expect the number of US ESPN+ viewers to grow 26.4% this year to 15.9 million. While the pandemic accelerated the shift to streaming, the disruption of live sports programming was an important barrier to what could have been a greater uptake of digital sports streaming during a normal year. This growth poses a problem to pay TV operators, with live sports coverage being a key reason many consumers continue subscribing to their services.
Want to read more stories like this one? Here’s how you can gain access:
- Join other Insider Intelligence clients who receive this Briefing, along with other Media, Advertising, & Marketing forecasts, briefings, charts, and research reports to their inboxes each day. >> Become a Client
- Explore related topics more in depth. >> Browse Our Coverage
Current subscribers can access the entire Insider Intelligence content archive here.
Credit: Source link