EDITOR’S NOTE: With this multi-week series — the Front Row Forward/Rewind, 2016/2015 — ESPN’s Communications Department takes the pulse of content executives throughout ESPN for their views on what’s ahead across ESPN for 2016 and some of what transpired in 2015. The snapshots provide a look at where ESPN has been, where it’s going and how it plans on getting there.
Ryan Spoon, Senior VP Product, ESPN Digital & Print Media
The two best examples of organizational teamwork coincidentally arrived the same week. On December 1, we launched the new ESPN web redesign for ESPN Deportes and our SSLA regions. This represented many months of prior work – but exemplifies teamwork across ESPN as we now have shared technology platforms, product and designs, advertising tools and packages, content systems and more. That same week, we integrated WatchESPN functionality directly into the ESPN App. We did this ahead of the College Football Playoff and delivered a concise and elegant fan experience. It too represented teamwork across ESPN: the affiliate team, marketing, TV production, ad sales and technology all worked hand-in-hand to make it happen.
What was the most “social” moment of 2015?
Patrick Stiegman, Vice President Content, ESPN Digital & Print Media
There were myriad social “moments” in 2015, but two distinguishing events involved Caitlyn Jenner and Ronda Rousey, respectively. When Caitlyn Jenner was awarded the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYS, not only was it a transformational moment in sports and culture, the reaction on social was sweeping — nearly 100,000 interactions (shares, retweets, likes, comments and replies across platforms) in near real-time, and more than 150,000 link clicks flooded feeds across Facebook and Twitter. And those were all accompanied by an amazing first-person perspective from ESPN.com Christina Kahrl. For different but equally important reasons, it was Rousey’s 34-second knockout of Bethe Correia — even more so than her later defeat by Holly Holm — that captivated social users. It was the perfect combination of an incredibly appealing athlete dominating her craft, and the brevity of the fight led to an instantaneous reaction — the social post generated an incredible 24M link clicks from ESPN social accounts and nearly 525,000 interactions (shares, retweets, likes, comments, and replies across platforms). Both events underscored the power of live, the impact of diverse storytelling and the ability to disseminate surprising and engaging content to a broad audience as part of social journalism.
John Kosner, Executive VP, ESPN Digital & Print Media I am most excited by our ability to continue to tell the stories that no one else does, and to do so in a way that is totally multimedia, broadly distributed across ESPN media, available in English and Spanish and unique. We will use our huge reach to get fans the stories that they are most interested in with the easiest mechanism for them to share them broadly.
Top 10 Most Viewed Stories on ESPN.com
|Rank||Top Stories||Page Views (Millions)|
|1.||Stuart Scott dies at age of 49||12.54|
|2.||Cavs net J.R. Smith, Iman Shumpert||7.39|
|3.||Floyd Mayweather Jr. stripped of WBO welterweight title||4.18|
|4.||Split Image: Madison Holleran||3.65|
|5.||LeSean McCoy traded to Bills||3.50|
|6.||Seahawks trade for Jimmy Graham||3.48|
|7.||Spygate to Deflategate: Inside what split the NFL and Patriots apart||3.45|
|8.||NFL suspends Tom Brady for four games||3.18|
|9.||Josh Gordon facing 1-year ban||3.10|
|10.||Johnny Manziel enters treatment||3.09|