Don’t Promise Winners and Losers in Sports Teases

By Graeme Newell 

“Who won the game, we’ll tell you at eleven.” When we use this cheap technique to tease sports, it just makes viewers angry. They know you’re actively withholding and they don’t like it. You know you’re in trouble when the tease you wrote takes more time to convey than the actual story.

These days, sports scores are everywhere. In times gone by, traditional media was the sole source of sports information, but connectivity has turned sports scores into a commodity. If they didn’t hear it on the radio, or see it on the web, then they probably got the scores streamed right to the phone on their hip.

Avoid the cheap sports withholding trick by promising the best individual moment of the game, not the outcome. Don’t tease who won or lost. Viewers know everyone will have that. It’s expected.


For example, don’t promise, “We’ll tell you who won the basketball game.” Instead, promise the best clip, “A thundering John Tallguy jam that brought down the house!” Don’t mention winners and losers. Don’t promise “The winner in the Maryland-Duke game.” Instead promise, “The second-half scoring run that made this game a buzzer beater.” The viewer will come back to see who won, but they don’t feel like you’re toying with them. Promise the best individual component of the game. It just seems more honest and straightforward.

Graeme Newell is a broadcast and web marketing specialist who serves as the president and founder of 602 communications. You can reach Graeme at