On Monday, November 17th, 2014 I attended the Media Sports panel here at the University of Michigan. Before attending, I had never heard of CBS Sports’ new show “We Need To Talk”. Now, I’m the one who can’t stop talking about it. CBS has developed this new sports show that is hosted entirely by women, and it is the first to ever do so. These women come from all different backgrounds in the sporting world, and that is what brings this show to life. But what is CBS Sports doing to promote their new show? Are they using digital disruption to their advantage?
In this video CBS Sports president, David Berson, and CBS Sports sideline reporter, Tracy Wolfson, discuss the ‘ins and outs’ of the new show. (Footage shot by Brendan Rand)
In the clip you may have noticed that they neglected to mention how well the show is doing, or which demographics they are trying to target, but David Berson did say, “It’s all about women and giving them a voice”.
I realized that although this is groundbreaking news in the realm of sports, I had not noticed anything about the show prior to attending the panel event. This is saying something, because I follow CBS Sports on all social media platforms. Granted, the show is incredibly new (it first aired on September 30, 2014), however, I was still shocked to see that the network was not using their social media platforms to their full capability. So I asked David Berson about this in a short interview after the panel.
As you can see, he is not the best person to talk to about specific social media outlets, but he did mention something extremely important. ALL 11 women on the show are promoting the show using their personal social media sites. One of the most important to note is Twitter. The CBS website itself urges viewers to follow each of the women.
In addition, the women promote the show themselves on multiple platforms as you can see here:
One thing that I mentioned in the interview is the lack of attention that the show is getting on it’s own platforms on social media. The Instagram and Twitter accounts both have comparatively small numbers of followers compared to the amount of followers that CBS Sports social media profiles have as a whole.
So basically what I’m trying to say is, although the CBS Sports Network itself isn’t doing so well in the social media aspect of promotion for “We Need To Talk”, this show is getting A LOT of promotion from the 11 women who host it, and one would think that most of it is geared toward the female demographic. Why is the show focusing on women? In my opinion, and from all of the research I have done, I would guess that CBS is attempting to target the audience that they have not been able to reach yet. In a study conducted by CBS Sports representatives, they found that over seventy percent of their viewers are men. If the NFL says that their network is only growing because women make up their fastest growing fan demographic, then is that any indication of what other businesses in the world of sports should be focusing on? And shouldn’t these numbers be more representative of the audience that CBS Sports is trying to target?
One last important piece of information to note is the demographic of social media users. Women are climbing far above men in terms of their engagement with social media platforms. Therefore, by having all 11 hosts promoting this show, they are more likely to target their intended audience, especially when the women have a large amount of followers…
I think that the people at CBS Sports are on the right track in order to maintain their success in the sports broadcasting industry, but I think that they could definitely use some help in developing the new show’s image and presence on social media. They may not be able to offer me the job right now (I have one semester left of college), but I’m just thrilled that I got to meet some of the people at the top of this success, and ever-changing business.