FuboTV, the sports-centric internet TV service, is airing its first national campaign during NFL games this season as it looks to find a foothold in the rapidly growing over-the-top streaming video marketplace.
Fubo has become one of a sea of internet-delivered TV services looking to attract younger consumers who are either disconnecting from their traditional pay-TV providers or have never had cable or satellite at all. But Fubo is unique in that it started as a streaming service dedicated to soccer in 2015. It has since expanded to include more than 65 networks, more than half of which are sports channels. (ESPN is not included in its packages).
While Fubo has done some targeted digital marketing, this is essentially its coming out party to the general market, says Alberto Horihuela, co-founder and CMO, FuboTV.
Certainly Fubo has plenty of work to do in creating brand awareness. Last year, the company said it topped 71,000 subscribers. In comparison, it’s believed among some analysts that Dish Network’s Sling ended the first quarter with 1.3 million subscribers.
Fubo doesn’t have the same brand recognition as other OTT services from the likes of Dish, Hulu and DirecTV. And cord-cutting tends to occur among consumers who are not necessarily sports fans — people who don’t want to pay for cable and satellite packages whose costs are inflated by sports rights.
And for sports fantastic, cutting the cord in many cases would be just as expensive (or more so) than traditional pay-TV.
Horihuela calls Fubo an “underdog” that must think creatively about its marketing. With its new campaign, Fubo is introducing the character “Fubo Chavez,” proclaimed “the world’s greatest fan.” Played by comedian and actor Michael Varamogiannis, Fubo’s first spot finds Fubo Chavez in a locker room telling everyone “about the world’s biggest sports package,” when the towel wrapped around his waist falls off reveals his, umm, package.
“Other players try to win with high frequency of impressions. For us, we don’t have that luxury so we need to be nimble and effective in our communication,” Horihuela says, adding that they were looking for a more “edgy” message that really homed in on its target male audience.
Fubo is looking to attract men 25 years old and up. “In the context of cord cutting, it is really challenging to get someone who has never had cable to embrace a service like ours,” Horiheula says.
The first of the three 15-second spots aired last weekend, and the campaign will run in NFL games on CBS, Fox and NBC, as well as cable sports networks like FS1 and NBC Sports and regional sports channels in some key markets throughout the season.
The commercials were co-created by the agency Bigeyedwish and Duckworth Entertainment and directed by Bryan Buckley and produced by his Hungry Man Productions. Deutsch is handling media buying for the campaign.
FuboTV is making its “Fubo Premier” package, which includes more than 65 networks, available for $19.99 per month for the first two months. It normally costs $34.99 per month.