Sports publishers use fantasy frenzy to drive subscriptions

DIGIDAY – 06/09/2019

Max Willens

Dramatic changes in the fantasy landscape, including the slowdown of daily fantasy and the rise of legalized gambling, have triggered an explosion of paid subscription products from both newcomers and incumbents.

This year, CBS-owned Sportsline added five new features to its Insiders product, including computer modeling, and gambling picks in a new spate of sports, including golf and the WNBA. NBC Sports’s Rotoworld, which has been publishing fantasy sports news and analysis since 1999, launched a set of proprietary tools for daily fantasy players. ESPN has added a trove of exclusive content to ESPN+ for fantasy players, including exclusive video content inside the ESPN+ app. (Interest in fantasy has powered sponsored content opportunities too: Vox Media announced Thursday that it had built a site for DraftKings.)

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