ESPN is letting advertisers take a step further on the network’s digital platforms. The sports network will now allow brands to distribute their own branded content and series on its TV Everywhere app and — possibly — other digital properties, as reported by AdAge.
So far, the sports network has tried this out on the WatchESPN app with Dick’s Sporting Goods’ documentary series, “Hell Week.” The series follows a high school football team throughout preseason and has been featured on the WatchESPN app, where it remained for two weeks.
“Hell Week” has a history on ESPN, where season two aired as a half-hour show on TV (the first season appeared on YouTube). The third season ran in short-form episodes during ESPN show SportCenter, later expanding to WatchESPN.
ESPN is actively trying to get other brands to distribute content on the app. Brands interested in the idea can also end up working with ESPN CreativeWorks, the network’s own agency for such content, the company said to AdAge.
So far, the network has yet to announce what other brands might go the way of Dick’s Sporting Goods with its docu-series, “Hell Week.” Ed Erhardt, ESPN’s president of customer marketing and sales, declined to comment on whether any other brands have signed deals of this nature.