We’ve been tracking the daily fantasy advertising blitz for awhile here at AA, and judging by what we’ve seen lately on outlets like ESPN and MLB Network, it doesn’t look like daily fantasy is going away any time soon. But the latest development is one that we didn’t necessarily see coming – daily fantasy sites are now creating content for their sites, both original and aggregated.
On Monday night, news began to trickle out that FanDuel had added some more prominent writers to their staff, past their earlier additions of Bleacher Report alums Will Carroll and Michael Schottey.
— Jake Ciely (@allinkid) June 1, 2015
The content has been popping up on the FanDuel Insider blog, which isn’t prominently displayed on FanDuel’s main page. Much of the content is viral in nature – Vines, GIFs, and so on and so forth. FanDuel’s blog also features longer columns by Schottey and Carroll, and the fantasy content you’d expect from a site like FanDuel (best plays for the night, best players from the past week, etc).
I’m not pessimistic about this new venture – in fact, I wish FanDuel and their growing staff of writers well, because giving talented writers an outlet can only be a good thing.
I’m wondering what FanDuel’s endgame here is, though. Could they have deduced that paying writers to create content loaded with advertising for their own product is cheaper than paying for advertising on a site like FTW or Bleacher Report? Maybe some of their viral or original content begins to draw respectable traffic, and FanDuel is receiving a better return on their investment with this content than they are with some of their advertising. Customized entrance codes for a variety of advertisers (including the advertising on the Insider blog) allows FanDuel to see which campaigns are working and which aren’t, and it wouldn’t take much effort to compare their investment in each outlet.
It’s an interesting technique, and I’m very curious whether or not it actually ends up working out well for FanDuel. Will their content draw enough views and referrals from people outside of the FanDuel environment to make the commitment worth it? Or is it simply easier and less time-consuming to purchase advertising in a more conventional way on other outlets while focusing on the nuts and bolts of the site?