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Marketing to Sports Fans - US - August 2015

Published By :

Mintel

Published Date : Aug 2015

Category :

Advertising and Marketing

No. of Pages : N/A

Technology has impacted sports by changing the way fans follow their favorite teams and as digital marketing takes precedence. Modern fans expect to be targeted online and will increasingly expect leagues to offer a seamless experience across various devices and platforms.

Overview

What you need to know
Definition

Executive Summary

The issues
Fans of the future: Fandom down among kids
Figure 1: Percentage of kids who watch sports on TV at least occasionally, December 2007-December 2014
Female fans: Under-targeted and under-engaged
Money, money, money: Fans think the sports industry is too greedy
Figure 2: Attitudes toward sports and money, May 2015
Extra! Extra! Bad publicity dampens enthusiasm for sports
Time is of the essence: Being a sports fan can be time consuming
The opportunities
No child left behind: Targeting kids
Figure 3: Following sports as a family bonding activity, by parental status, May 2015
Market like a girl: Engaging female fans
These fans ain’t loyal: Both team and player loyalty are important
Spin control: Preventing bad behavior from tarnishing a team’s image
Figure 4: Impact of negative press on opinion of team/sports, by parental status, May 2015
What we think

The Market – What You Need to Know

Sports generate nearly $64 billion in North America
Fans also spending on extracurricular sports-related activities
The majority of US adults are sports fans
Mobile devices, cord cutting impact how fans watch sports
Following sports competing with more leisure activities than ever before

Market Breakdown

Sports generate nearly $64 billion in North America
Americans place billions in illegal bets each year
Fantasy sports generate $3.6 billion annually

Sports Fan Breakdown

The majority of US adults are sports fans
Figure 5: Dedication to following sports, May 2015
Men, Millennials and more affluent likely to be sports fans
Figure 6: Sports fans, by gender, generation, household income, May 2015

Market Perspective

Mobile devices impact how fans watch sports
Figure 7: Cell phone/smartphone and tablet ownership, February 2007-March 2015
Cord cutting may hurt sports industry
Following sports competing with more leisure activities than ever before
Increasing involvement in fantasy sports may improve engagement
Kids’ interest in sports ebbing, could impact the industry down the road
Figure 8: Percentage of kids who watch sports on TV at least occasionally, December 2007-December 2014

Key Players – What You Need to Know

“Connected” is the name of the game – in more than one way
Keeping an eye on future fans and bad publicity
Technology’s impact on sports only in its first inning

Winning Moves

Sports make people feel more connected
Figure 9: “#THIS: Pence opts to avoid arm wrestle with young fan,” online video, 2015
Figure 10: “Football is our everything,” online video, 2015
Figure 11: “Chicago Basketball is Home – Derrick Rose,” online video, 2014
And making sports more “connected” opens new opportunities
Figure 12: “#49ersInHaiti playing catch with local children after hosting a football clinic,” Vine video, 2015
More game-watching options keeps fans engaged
Spotlighting celebrity fans can raise a team’s profile
Figure 13: “LHN – All Access with Matthew McConaughey,” online video, 2014

Losing Plays

Failure to engage fans of the future could spell disaster
Figure 14: Percentage of kids who watch sports on TV at least occasionally, December 2007-December 2014
Bad publicity may deter fans
Less popular sports still struggle, could benefit from increased involvement

What’s on Deck?

Wearable technology goes pro
The stadiums of the future
Figure 15: “Capture Your Moment,” online video, 2014
All about access
Daily fantasy sports could lead to more engaged fans

The Consumer – What You Need to Know

Football is America’s favorite sport
TV shows and networks most popular, fans prefer to watch full games
Home is “home base” for watching sports
Fans likely to watch alone, with housemates
Men more interested in details and commentary, more likely to play in fantasy leagues
Water and soda help fans stay hydrated
Salty snacks, meat, carryout fuel fans
Following sports provides a sense of belonging
Greed puts off fans, negative press dampens enthusiasm

Sports Followed

Two thirds follow professional sports, four in 10 follow college teams
Figure 16: Engagement in professional and college sports leagues – Sports fans, May 2015
Football: Professional and college – is a fan favorite
Football draws the crowds
Figure 17: Sports followed at least occasionally, May 2015

Who are Sports Fans?

Sports Fans population skews male
Black fans drawn to fast-paced sports

How Sports Fans Stay Up-to-date

TV shows and networks most popular, fans still prefer to watch full games
Figure 18: Resources sports fans use to stay up-to-date, May 2015
Social media important, Facebook in particular

Watching Companions

Fans likely to watch alone, with housemates
Figure 19: Watching companions, May 2015
Female fans bring the family together
Figure 20: “Play Like Me!” and “#FuelGreatness with School Breakfast,” online videos, 2014-15
Millennials – always looking for an experience – more likely to watch with others

Where Fans Watch

Home is “home base” for watching sports
Millennials are key target for out-of-home viewing
Figure 21: Watching venues, by generation, May 2015
Sports bars are the venue of choice for the biggest fans
Figure 22: Watching venues, by level of sports dedication, May 2015

Information of Interest and Related Activities

Fans follow players, team news
Figure 23: Information of interest and related activities, May 2015
Men more interested in details and commentary, more likely to play in fantasy leagues
Millennial sports fans are significantly more engaged
Fantasy websites provide access to high-income fans, dads
Hyper-fans predictably more engaged

Food and Drink Consumed While Watching Sports

Water and soda help fans stay hydrated
Figure 24: Beverages consumed while watching sports, May 2015
Millennials are the thirstiest sports fans
Urban fans opt for alcohol
Hyper-fans’ taste more sophisticated than may be expected
Salty snacks, meat, carryout fuel fans
Figure 25: Food and snacks consumed while watching sports, May 2015
For Black fans, watching sports works up quite an appetite
Hyper-fans eat healthy snacks
Eating, drinking, and watching sports go hand-in-hand-in-hand

Motivations for and Barriers to Following Sports

Following sports provides a sense of belonging
Figure 26: Motivations for following sports – Any agree, by generation, May 2015
Greed puts off fans, negative press dampens enthusiasm
Fans believe pro sports more about money, being a fan is too expensive
Time is money
Bad publicity may deter fans
Figure 27: Barriers to following sports – Any agree, by generation May 2015

Consumer Segmentation

Figure 28: Sports fans segmentation, May 2015
The Die-hard Fans (35%)
The “Not a fan” Fans (38%)
The Other Fans (27%)
Figure 29: Attitudes toward sports, by sports fans segments, May 2015

Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

Data sources
Consumer survey data
Abbreviations

Appendix – The Consumer

Figure 30: Engagement in professional and college sports leagues, May 2015
Figure 31: Percentage of kids who watch sports on TV at least occasionally, December 2007-December 2014
Figure 32: Kids’ ownership of any licensed sports clothing, December 2007-December 2014
Figure 33: Sports league apparel owned by kids, December 2007-December 2014
Figure 34: Percent of kids who play sports video games, December 2007-December 2014

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