Sky Sports to replace numbered channels and revamp brand following falling viewer ratings
Sky will replace numbered channels and introduce a cheaper sports package for consumers in an attempt to win back viewers.
Following a decline in viewer numbers, Sky has opted to drop Sky Sports 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 and instead offer themed channels focussed on football, golf, cricket etc. The decision to rebrand, alongside the introduction of cheaper packages, is expected to excite a turnaround for the company.
The new channels will replicate the likes of Sky’s existing Formula One channel, the entire content of which is dedicated to one sport in particular. As well as the football, golf and cricket channels, Sky will also introduce Sky Sports Arena to cover content such as rugby and tennis.
Additionally, pay-TV subscribers will now be able to select cheaper package options, as Sky are set to decrease the least expensive offering to just £18. This will attract customers who were hesitant to pay the current £49.50 for the cheapest sports package available.
The strategy aims to boost viewing figures back up and attract more consumers, which may have dropped to the rising popularity of cheaper streaming services, such as Netflix and Amazon, as well as the widespread availability of On Demand services.
Director at Ampere Analysis, Richard Broughton, explained: “There are a range of reasons why Sky would be looking at such a big structural change to its pay-TV service.
“In part it could be a response to the ongoing question of viewing numbers to traditional pay-TV sport. There is also a demographic shift where people, especially younger groups, are reluctant to spend so much. Get reluctant to spend groups, such as millennials, in on cheap packages and look to up-sell at a later date.”