ESPN is clearly a media entity in transition. Subscriber losses due to cord cutters and evolving media consumption have led the Worldwide Leader in Sports to cut staff and rethink the way in which it delivers content. One major development in this shift is the new ESPN Plus streaming service that is launching next year. Another, albeit smaller, move is their announcement today that they will be bringing their flagship sports news show, SportsCenter, to Snapchat.
Snapchat is an extremely popular messaging app with 178 million daily active users. It is extremely popular with teens and millennials, two demographics that are most associated with cord-cutting, so this is a pretty smart play by Disney.
ESPN’s SportsCenter can be found in Snapchat’s Discover section. Two new SportsCenter shows will be available on weekdays on Snapchat; an episode at 5am and another at 5pm. On weekends, there will only be a 5am episode. Each episode will be 3-5 minutes long (brevity is key on Snapchat) and will combine sports news, highlights and commentary.
There is no set host for this new Snapchat series as ESPN seems to be content with rotating their talent. The launch show will be hosted by Katie Nolan, who recently came to ESPN from Fox Sports where she was rising in popularity with a younger demographic. According to ESPN’s announcement, other hosts will include Elle Duncan, Cassidy Hubbarth, Jason Fitz and Cy Amundson.