ESPN recently reported an acceleration in user and viewership growth following the airing of several landamark events. The network's digital service now averages 98.5 million users per month, marking its best-ever first half-year average. This past June served as the brand's 40th month as number one in the US digital sports category for monthly unique visitors.
The events credit for the viewership acceleration include the MLB regular season, NBA playoffs, cricket, and Euro 2020 football, which also delivered huge audiences in July. After the Mayweather v. Paul fight, the service saw a 24% year-on-year increase in users and 132% year-over-year in minutes. In addition to the overall traffic for the web destination, the ESPN App saw 21 million users in June, with total minutes up 261% year-over-year.
Looking at popular individual programming, ESPN noted that across ESPN’s digital shows, "Hoop Streams" averaged 1.4 million views per episode during the NBA Finals, a total of 8.4 million viewers in total, up 10% from last year’s Finals, while watch time more than doubled. "Hoop Streams" averaged 1.1 million views per episode over the Western Conference Finals, up 25% compared with 2020 ECF.
The network's social media platforms also saw promising growth, ranking number one in social actions across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the third-straight month. A total of 361 million social actions were generated across its social accounts in June of this year, serving as the third-consecutive month ESPN led the social sports publisher ranking.