ESPN is going on offense to urge viewers to ignore using streaming services, and watch sports LIVE on ESPN according according to Variety. The sports network is running an ad campaign that targets Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter users. Each ad talks directly to the viewer, and encourages them to take a break from their social connection.
“Sharing your life can wait,” one commercial stresses to the viewer, “because it’s just like everyone else’s.”
The commercials are scheduled to air on ESPN television, digital and mobile, over the next few weeks, and then take a break before returning when baseball’s playoff races heat up and football becomes the top focus of sports fans.
ESPN is focused on reducing the momentum of streaming providers because they’ve experienced the loss of millions of customers who have cut the cord with cable to save money.
The network will feature different advertisements in order to keep the messages fresh. The one challenge, is that the ads will reach people who are currently watching ESPN, but not those who are tuned into programming on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and other services. Critics say that defeats the purpose of the campaign, but one can argue that retaining its current base of fans is even more important than regaining those who left.