ESPN was looking for new areas of growth beyond existing revenue channels. We sought to transcend ESPN’s status as a preeminent media brand by evolving into a beloved sports lifestyle brand.

We sought to understand what core equities of ESPN made it successful with core fans and where fringe fans might listen. Through extensive qualitative work, we explored the brand inside-out before conducting an outside-in approach to understand the perspective of fans, and how it changed over time.

We realized that despite sports playing a predominate role in consumers lives and the ESPN brand, neither was addressing emerging tensions in sports culture.

We discovered these tensions were directly related to fans’
changing relationship with sports over lifestages. We sought to reimagine the world of sports for both fans and athletes, what we call “fanathletes”.

ESPN incorporated a number of ideas ranging from licensing, original content creation, experiences, products and services.