We know that live sports programming can be a big draw for attracting consumers to streaming services, and Antenna data has shown that certain sports-motivated subscribers can be more loyal than the average subscriber. So with Super Bowl LVIII set for this weekend, we wanted to know how well the various services that have carried “the Big Game” have done retaining their respective cohorts of Super Bowl subscribers.
In looking at Antenna retention data for sign-ups in a three-day window surrounding the Super Bowl, we observed that for the 2021 Super Bowl 66% of sign-ups to Paramount+ (then known as CBS All Access) were still subscribed to the service two months later. For the 2022 Super Bowl available on Peacock, 62% of subscribers of the sign-up cohort were still with the service two months later, while only 36% of subscribers in the 2023 Super Bowl sign-up cohort for YouTube TV remained two months after. Looking at the survival rate of the Super Bowl sign-ups for the various services 10 months out: 43% were still subscribed to CBS All Access, 35% were still subscribed to Peacock, and 24% remained subscribed to YouTube TV.
While tentpole events like the Super Bowl are successful acquisition drivers for streaming services, other factors–like promotion and pricing–can have an impact on loyalty and retention rates.
In 2021 CBS All Access (now Paramount+) offered consumers a free 7-day trial as well as a 50% promotional discount on sign-ups to its annual plan. These promotional offers also coincided with the rebranding of CBS All Access to Paramount+, which expanded its content library to include content from other Paramount-owned properties. The combination of promotional offerings around a marquee event like the Super Bowl and marketing efforts for launch of Paramount+ are certainly contributing factors to the higher survival rate. YouTube TV also offered a free two-week trial for the 2023 Super Bowl, and as a virtual MVPD, YouTube TV has a higher monthly price point than stand-alone streaming services.
Content can also play a role in retention rates, as streaming services have an opportunity to market directly to subscribers about other programming available on the service. Peacock did not offer any free trials for the 2022 Super Bowl, and the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing were also available to stream on Peacock’s paid plans and were heavily promoted, along with other shows and streaming same-day theatrical releases.
Beyond Super Bowl LVIII, it’s clear that the amount of live sports content on streaming is only going to increase.
And as consumers face more choices and fewer restrictions on how and when they subscribe to services, streamers will require a more sophisticated understanding of both how they acquire and retain their customers to remain competitive.
For more detailed information on Antenna’s methodology and definitions of core metrics, please visit http://www.antenna.live/methodology.
Brendan Brady is a Content Strategy Associate at Antenna, a measurement and analytics company providing insight into purchase behavior and subscription metrics across the new media landscape.