ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN360.com, ESPN.com, ESPN Mobile and ESPN Digital Audio Reach New Highs
September was a big month for ESPN with milestones across multiple platforms. In the month that ESPN turned 30, sports fans tuned in, logged on and listened to content from television, online, mobile and digital audio at record levels.
The cross-platform growth momentum continued into early October, when ESPN’s Monday Night Football between the Minnesota Vikings and Green Bay Packers delivered the biggest audience in the history of cable television (over 15 million homes) and the highest rating (15.3) in ESPN’s 30-year history. Online, ESPN.com had more than 110 million page views to NFL content accessed via computers and mobile devices for Monday through Tuesday at noon – up 47 percent from the comparable time period last year. Specifically, page views for the NFL section on computers and mobile were up 44 percent from last year. Additionally, ESPN.com streamed 3.7 million NFL related videos.
Highlights from ESPN’s record September:
September was the most-viewed month in the history of both ESPN and ESPN2, helping lift the combined audience for those nets plus ESPNEWS and ESPN Classic to new highs on a total day basis for the month. The networks set a mark for September with 1,654,000 homes, up 12 percent from the previous high, 1,481,000 in 2008. Other highlights:
- In September, ESPN averaged an all-time high for any month (1,164,000 HHs). The audience was 7 percent larger than last year, a then-record 1,092,000 households.
- ESPN2 averaged 33 percent more homes for the month than a year ago (396,000 HHs, up from 298,000), its best ever, breaking the record for the month set in 2007 (343,000 HHs) and the record for any month set in June 2006 (358,000 HHs).
- ESPNEWS averaged 65,000 homes in September, up 12 percent from 2008 (58,000).
ESPN360.com’s rapid distribution growth – which has doubled in the past year to more than 50 million households nationwide – is being outpaced by its usage growth, setting records in the process. According to Move Analytics, ESPN360.com had its most viewed month ever in September, with more than 250 percent growth in total hours of viewing and more th
an 180 percent increase in viewers, compared to 2008.
ESPN.com also logged its best month ever in September. According to comScore, ESPN.com generated nearly 2.2 billion total minutes and 28.8 million unique visitors, up 54 percent and 21 percent respectively compared to the same month last year and surpassing their previous all-time highs by 52 percent and 19 percent.
ESPN.com remained number one in category share of minutes for the tenth consecutive month with more than a quarter of total minutes in the sports category. The site also topped all others in average minutes per visitor with 75.5 minutes.
Additionally, ESPN.com had more viewers of online video in September than ever, with 9.3 million viewers logging nearly 196 million minutes of video viewing, making it top among sports sites, accounting for nearly 34 percent of all time spent with sports video online.
Visits in September on the ESPN mobile Web site were up 82 percent compared to last year, according to Omniture measurments. Additionally, ESPN’s mobile Web site logged its then-record day with 8.1 million visits. That record has sense been broken (on October 11 the site logged 8.5 million visits).
Additionally, ESPN’s ScoreCenter application for the iPhone and iPod has now been downloaded more than 3 million times and in September logged more than 2 million unique users, with more than 50 percent of the app users using it at least weekly.
ESPN Digital Audio
Streaming audio on ESPNRadio.com reached an all-time high in September. Sports fans listened to nearly 8 million total hours, up nearly 61 percent compared to the same month in 2008 and beating its previous record set in May 2009 by nearly 40 percent. Sessions were also up to nearly 4.8 million, an increase of over 128 percent compared to the same month last year and more than double its previous all-time record in May 2009.