When it comes to being ahead of the curve, ESPN is one of the leaders. They began as a modest cable network and have evolved into much more, being adept at reaching out to a rabid base of sports fans through various means and have become the most recognizable name for sports. They have a successful magazine, multiple channels, a easy-to-use website, and tons of live sports on various platforms. They have even been very adept at using Twitter too, taking it to levels that news organizations wish they could. Back to my main point about ESPN though, they are at it again.
According to this article, ESPN is going to be the first media company to use the service of Arbitron and comScore, two services that will “try to measure the media consumption patterns of consumers across five platforms: radio, television, mobile phones, tablets and desktop computers.” This is a very interesting development in my mind. Newspapers have struggled with ad revenue due to the emergence of the internet. Ad agencies are having a difficult time determining the effectiveness of their internet ads compared to television or radio ads. If these services work, this technology can be a game changer for newspapers. It would allow them to gain a service that they were so accustomed to getting before (in respect to ad revenues), because there would finally be a way to determine how effective some ads are and where improvement can be made. There would no longer be a reluctance for internet advertising if there was a way we could accurately, or somewhat accurately, determine the effectiveness of ads.
If this experiment fails or is determined inconclusive, well, I still respect ESPN for attempting to solve an issue that is very pressing in today’s society for media outlets. And maybe newspapers should try news things more often, because, as ESPN has shown, this can be a profitable time for media outlets.