DirecTV cutting price to snare football fans


DirecTVIs it a smart marketing move or a financial blunder? DirecTV took a hit on Wall Street after announcing plans to cut prices for a popular sports package.

The stock dropped 1.6% on Thursday (4/19) as the satellite TV company announced that it was lowering the price of its “NFL Sunday Ticket” package by 40%. However, the stock price recovered most of that ground on Friday.

The new price of $199.95 for the full slate of regular season out-of-market NFL games (in addition to the regular DirecTV subscription) is being billed as the lowest in a decade.

“NFL Sunday ticket is an incredible product and we want to make sure it is accessible and affordable to as many of our customers as possible, so we made the decision to dramatically lower the price,” said Alex Kaplan, Vice President, Marketing for DirecTV. “With these new package options we hope that those who had the service before will enjoy it again, and those who have not had a chance to subscribe to NFL Sunday Ticket will take this opportunity to experience this fantastic service for the first time.”

And while the price is being reduced for the NFL Sunday Ticket package, football fans who want even more can sign up for “NFL Sunday Ticket Max” for $299.95 – a $100 upgrade over the regular NFL Sunday Ticket. Max offers all games in HD, along with Red Zone Channel, Short Cuts, online/mobile access, Player Tracker, scores/stats/standings and highlights on demand.

RBR-TVBR observation:  Once a football fan is hooked on having all of the out-of-market NFL games it would probably take a dramatic personal financial crisis to make them give it up. Our guess is that DirecTV will make up in volume the percentage price cut. Plus, lots of current subscribers will likely take advantage of the upgrade offer to get even more NFL-related DirecTV products for slightly less than they had been paying for Sunday Ticket.