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Highly Entertianing - Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless


BornJetsFan1983

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understand your point but again.. think you're painting with broad strokes. the style your commenting on is isolated to daytime programming - as far as I can tell. When I'm home during the day I notice a significant difference in the amount of manufactured debate compared to their evening shows. They're basically going for male counter programming to the View.

if a George Michaels Sports Machine type show got the type of ratings that Skip and Smith yelling at each other does, that's what they'd be airing.

I know the daytime stuff is different. However, from a brand strategy standpoint - if the underpinnings of your content are serious, integrity, informative, and then suddenly during the day your divert to gossip, smut, shock and awe, then one of the two subsets of content is off-brand. I'm saying the daytime stuff is off-brand for them. Sure its good for ratings, but long-term it is bad for brand strategy.

Maybe, because its TV and not a consumer product brand, it'll work for them in the long-term, I don't know. BUT from the pure standpoint of how to build your brand the right way, the daytime smut is counter-productive to their image. A perfect example of why is the negative perception it has fostered with ACTUAL football fans, like the ones that discuss it here. Not good for the brand that football fans refuse to watch ESPN because the daytime programming has created the perception that all of their content is garbage.

Perception is reality. So while you may have noticed the difference between mid-day and evening programming, for many audiences the difference is insignificant compared to the perception they've accepted that ESPN now = sports TMZ.

It hurts the brand.

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I don't think you understand what I'm saying. I'm implying that ESPN is chasing the quick buck and positioning behind gossip, and opting out of long-term brand building behind integrity.

IF a competitor pops up and proves you can make the quick buck, and sustain a level of integrity, then ESPN will shift to that model, I'm sure.

I think you're naive to think that sensationalized garbage doesn't sell better then quality programming. Look at how Reality TV dominates tv ratings vs. shows like Breaking Bad and Mad Men. We live in a country of idiots, our culture has larger been cast aside in favor quick, easily digestible fixes. I don't see it changing cause there isn't an audience for it.. THe types of people that would appreciate higher brow programming, aren't the same types of people who sit around watching sports programming to begin with

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understand your point but again.. think you're painting with broad strokes.

so....

i'm not agreeing with the ape, but the whole painting with broad strokes as an argument dis-qualifier is really grating..

is it far to say that men are taller then women on average? Yes! That doesn't mean every man is taller then every women, but it's still a perfectly valid generalization

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I know the daytime stuff is different. However, from a brand strategy standpoint - if the underpinnings of your content are serious, integrity, informative, and then suddenly during the day your divert to gossip, smut, shock and awe, then one of the two subsets of content is off-brand. I'm saying the daytime stuff is off-brand for them. Sure its good for ratings, but long-term it is bad for brand strategy.

Maybe, because its TV and not a consumer product brand, it'll work for them in the long-term, I don't know. BUT from the pure standpoint of how to build your brand the right way, the daytime smut is counter-productive to their image. A perfect example of why is the negative perception it has fostered with ACTUAL football fans, like the ones that discuss it here. Not good for the brand that football fans refuse to watch ESPN because the daytime programming has created the perception that all of their content is garbage.

Perception is reality. So while you may have noticed the difference between mid-day and evening programming, for many audiences the difference is insignificant compared to the perception they've accepted that ESPN now = sports TMZ.

It hurts the brand.

A lot of truth here. They are going for the least common denominator to appeal to the broadest audience of people who are near a tv iin the middle of the day. Advertising rates are sustained by ratings, even if it's for stupid people. I know NOBODY who watches any of the network moring shows because they have jobs are are going to school or if they're retired are either sleeping or doing something. Yet those shows are ad revenue cash cows. it probably makes no sense, but that generates huge revenues every day. Similarly whlie if you're a thinking person "Outside the Lines" or one of those very good documentaries might appeal to you, you aren't home in the middle of the day and have a functioning brain. The loser who has no job to be home in the middle of the day doesn't employ much grey matter, hence the idiocy that is Screaming A. Smith and the other moron is appealing nonsense.It might hurt the brand a bit, but money is money. The competition is Judge Judy and Jerry.

Give them this much; unlike Mike Francesa they are not looking to outlaw twitter. The 1st Amendment bedevils our corpulent Moron of Manhasset. How dare the peasants harangue this great man with facts and statistics.

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I think you're naive to think that sensationalized garbage doesn't sell better then quality programming. Look at how Reality TV dominates tv ratings vs. shows like Breaking Bad and Mad Men. We live in a country of idiots, our culture has larger been cast aside in favor quick, easily digestible fixes. I don't see it changing cause there isn't an audience for it.. THe types of people that would appreciate higher brow programming, aren't the same types of people who sit around watching sports programming to begin with

I didn't say that garbage doesn't sell better than quality programming, and I agree with everything you are saying in bold which is I'm sure why ESPN has made the strategic shift to crap programming... I'm not questioning whether or not it works for getting ratings, I'm just discussing what it's long-term effects on brand perception are.

ESPN used to be the respected worldwide leader in sports news, positioned behind the same integrity that most of the professional sports leagues value. As part of their effort to snatch ratings, their programming has changed and with it the perception of their brand. They pump out more crap, and the perception of their brand is "they have become the sports version of TMZ". The fallout? Actual sports fans tune out.

ESPN made their traditional audience full of die-hard sports fans their secondary audience, behind the casual fan that is better defined as part of the "idiot culture". I'm sure they assumed that by focusing more programming on the idiots, they wouldn't lose much of the traditional audience, and the ones they would eventually lose could be replaced 10-fold by more idiots.

From a pure doing business to boost ratings standpoint, its smart, exploiting (or following) the trend in how to appeal to audiences.

From a long-term branding standpoint, its questionable, because they will eventually lose their position as the respected worldwide leader in sports news - which I'd see as a negative, but who knows it might be what their long-term strategy is - to eventually become more like the hot spot for sports gossip programming.

In the work I do, I help long-standing companies leverage trends without abandoning their long-term brand position. I think that ESPN could have captured more of the audience share for daytime crap, without it having AS MUCH of a negative impact on the brand platform. To the extent that every football fan I know thinks that network is a joke now, and rarely watch it... those sort of sentiments from legit fans of sports, that is where their content shift has started to redefine the brand perception.

That's all I've been talking about. I don't disagree with you or Pac about what either of you have brought up, you both make good points. I just don't think its a debate, so much as you guys talking about business strategy (get ratings) and me talking about how business strategy has impacted brand position (perception).

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A lot of truth here. They are going for the least common denominator to appeal to the broadest audience of people who are near a tv iin the middle of the day. Advertising rates are sustained by ratings, even if it's for stupid people. I know NOBODY who watches any of the network moring shows because they have jobs are are going to school or if they're retired are either sleeping or doing something. Yet those shows are ad revenue cash cows. it probably makes no sense, but that generates huge revenues every day. Similarly whlie if you're a thinking person "Outside the Lines" or one of those very good documentaries might appeal to you, you aren't home in the middle of the day and have a functioning brain. The loser who has no job to be home in the middle of the day doesn't employ much grey matter, hence the idiocy that is Screaming A. Smith and the other moron is appealing nonsense.It might hurt the brand a bit, but money is money. The competition is Judge Judy and Jerry.

Give them this much; unlike Mike Francesa they are not looking to outlaw twitter. The 1st Amendment bedevils our corpulent Moron of Manhasset. How dare the peasants harangue this great man with facts and statistics.

Agreed.

So the question I'm raising is, it might be good for business now - but if it hurts the brand, will it be good for business in the future? I could make predictions, but it would all be heuristic, it could be the right directional shift for them, or bite them in the a$$. It'll be interesting to watch though, at least interesting to a branding professional that loves sports, lol.

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so....

i'm not agreeing with the ape, but the whole painting with broad strokes as an argument dis-qualifier is really grating..

is it far to say that men are taller then women on average? Yes! That doesn't mean every man is taller then every women, but it's still a perfectly valid generalization

it's the first phrase that popped into my head chooch.. I didn't give it much thought.

now that I know it irks you I'll be sure to use it with regularity.

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it's the first phrase that popped into my head chooch.. I didn't give it much thought.

now that I know it irks you I'll be sure to use it with regularity.

lol

I was thinking the same thing. Incorrigible bunch of dooshes we 3 are.

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Agreed.

So the question I'm raising is, it might be good for business now - but if it hurts the brand, will it be good for business in the future? I could make predictions, but it would all be heuristic, it could be the right directional shift for them, or bite them in the a$$. It'll be interesting to watch though, at least interesting to a branding professional that loves sports, lol.

With our culture getting more dumbed down every day, it might not be a bad business decision. Furrther with hundreds of channels branding your channel isn't what it was even a few years ago. What channel is Jerry or Judge Judy even on? Becomes more of a question how many jobless or lazy a$$ eyeballs ESPN can get on their midday programming. And there are some really cheap ads on all of these shows. That's what ESPN is competing for, how many local pizzerias, quasi-infomercials and bedbug-sniffing dog ads can they cram into an hour to make it proftitable. It's not a long-term decision, but nobody else is making a long-term decision either. The market is cannibalizing itself.
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I didn't say that garbage doesn't sell better than quality programming, and I agree with everything you are saying in bold which is I'm sure why ESPN has made the strategic shift to crap programming... I'm not questioning whether or not it works for getting ratings, I'm just discussing what it's long-term effects on brand perception are.

ESPN used to be the respected worldwide leader in sports news, positioned behind the same integrity that most of the professional sports leagues value. As part of their effort to snatch ratings, their programming has changed and with it the perception of their brand. They pump out more crap, and the perception of their brand is "they have become the sports version of TMZ". The fallout? Actual sports fans tune out.

ESPN made their traditional audience full of die-hard sports fans their secondary audience, behind the casual fan that is better defined as part of the "idiot culture". I'm sure they assumed that by focusing more programming on the idiots, they wouldn't lose much of the traditional audience, and the ones they would eventually lose could be replaced 10-fold by more idiots.

From a pure doing business to boost ratings standpoint, its smart, exploiting (or following) the trend in how to appeal to audiences.

From a long-term branding standpoint, its questionable, because they will eventually lose their position as the respected worldwide leader in sports news - which I'd see as a negative, but who knows it might be what their long-term strategy is - to eventually become more like the hot spot for sports gossip programming.

In the work I do, I help long-standing companies leverage trends without abandoning their long-term brand position. I think that ESPN could have captured more of the audience share for daytime crap, without it having AS MUCH of a negative impact on the brand platform. To the extent that every football fan I know thinks that network is a joke now, and rarely watch it... those sort of sentiments from legit fans of sports, that is where their content shift has started to redefine the brand perception.

That's all I've been talking about. I don't disagree with you or Pac about what either of you have brought up, you both make good points. I just don't think its a debate, so much as you guys talking about business strategy (get ratings) and me talking about how business strategy has impacted brand position (perception).

1) tldr;

2) I'm not taking issue with the first part of you argument, that they switched for better ratings. that's obv, what I'm disagreeing with is your statement that they'll switch back as soon as someone comes along who does it in a smarter way and is successful with it. .. My response is that it's unlikely this mystery new channel is going to appear and get better ratings then ESPN if it plays to the eggheads... The eggheads are outnumbered by the meatheads to begin with, and eggheads generally enjoy more interactive entertainment then watching the boob tube, like reading,writing, music, etc..

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1) tldr;

2) I'm not taking issue with the first part of you argument, that they switched for better ratings. that's obv, what I'm disagreeing with is your statement that they'll switch back as soon as someone comes along who does it in a smarter way and is successful with it. .. My response is that it's unlikely this mystery new channel is going to appear and get better ratings then ESPN if it plays to the eggheads... The eggheads are outnumbered by the meatheads to begin with, and eggheads generally enjoy more interactive entertainment then watching the boob tube, like reading,writing, music, etc..

Ah, okay with the clarification, I get where you are coming from entirely.

Yeah, that statement was presumptuous, I won't argue it. I was trying to insinuate a culture of trend-chasing, which I would know nothing about since I don't work there. Long story short, yeah, it is unlikely that a new competitor be introduced and influence ESPN as I earlier insinuated. Especially since all the competition is one-sport-based channels like MLB, NFL, NHL. More likely, if quality programming suddenly garnered better ratings broadly (beyond just sports), they'd shift back, and as I think we all agree - that's not happening in our idiot culture anytime soon.

Anyway, its something I'm interested in watching unfold. It's a great case study for the content strategists that seem to be emerging in my field.

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