Streaming options are becoming a necessity for sport leagues to attract a younger demographic. The NBA offers League Pass, smaller team-specific packages and the option for fans to purchase a single game. Now, the NBA is giving fans the chance to jump into the fourth quarter of a game for just 99 cents.
Vasu Kulkarni, managing partner of Courtside Ventures, a tech and entertainment investment company, Tweeted an alert from the NBA app promoting the chance to join the fourth quarter of a Heat – Thunder game for just 99 cents. While this is a newly released feature the NBA is testing, it’s something league Commissioner Adam Silver began discussing in recent years.
“Certainly we’re going from a place where it was one price for an entire season of games. Now just in the last two years, we’ve made single games available,” Silver said referring to the NBA League Pass package at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show. “But I think you’re going to get to the point where somebody wants to watch the last five minutes of the game, and they go click, they’ll pay a set price for five minutes as opposed to what they would pay for two hours of the game.”
ESPN sports business reporter Darren Rovell anticipates the end of game micropayment , which he originally Tweeted about in 2015, “will become a significant revenue stream” for the NBA.
At CES in January 2017, Silver went on to state, “I think you’re going to hit the point where for example … you’re on a Twitter feed or you get an alert. I think there will be a lot more sophisticated alerts, and you’ll see, ‘I know Sue Bird, I like Sue Bird, Sue Bird’s going for a record-setting game.’ And then you’re going to go click, and then you’re going to get the game.”
The alert Tweeted by Kulkarni fits right into the example laid out by Silver. Casual fans might not have time to watch an entire game, nor do they want to spend $199.99 for a full subscription to League Pass, but when the right matchup is targeted to someone, they can be convinced to spend 99 cents on the most exciting part of the game.