It’s a well-known fact that live sports draws lots of viewers to television, but Nielsen’s recently released Year in Sports Media Report offers some audience- and advertiser-specific data and interesting consumer factoids on each of the major professional sports, based on their 2013-14 seasons.
Within the data pages of each sport, Nielsen breaks out three of what it calls “fan insights,” or particular targeted data that sheds light on how the fans of each sport use various products or maintain different consumer habits compared to the “average U.S. adult.”
The data in the report was, according to the measurement company, compiled “using Nielsen Talent Analytics, which represents the collective Nielsen intelligence, insights and solutions for linking brands and audiences across the entertainment industry.”
The report also highlights TV watching, twitter usage and viewing on myriad devices, and chronicles ways fans used to view their favorite teams. It also recaps viewing and demo data from all the major sports and events during 2014.
One major digital highlight in the report points out that “a collective 72.3 million Americans consumed a staggering 71 billion minutes of sports content in October 2014 alone, and those numbers will only continue to grow.” In the two years between October 2012 and October 2014, the average user increased his or her monthly time spent on mobile sports content by 35%.
But the report also points out that despite the growth in digital sports viewing, and continued large numbers of watching on TV, radio still draws a sizable number of sports listeners. The report says sports radio attracts 23 million weekly listeners who tune in for an average of 4 hours per week. And contrary to what many might expect, 29% of that listening occurs in the home.
Sports radio listeners are also a desirable marketing target. Compared to the U.S. population, sports radio listeners trend as highly educated and wealthy. Over 50% earn more than $75,000 per year and 46% have a college degree.
With the NBA season moving closer to the playoffs, Nielsen’s NBA audience data should be of particular interest to marketers right now; the report also has a section on NASCAR, whose season just began; and Major League Baseball, whose telecast season begins next month.
While all fans have increased their time watching the NBA over the past 10 years, the jump in African-American viewership has risen 63% in the ten years from the 2003-04 season to the 2013-14 season.
Hispanics are also big followers of NBA telecasts, with the average 18-34 millennial in the demo having spent 456 minutes watching NBA games during the 2013-14 regular season, an increase of 13% from 10 years ago. Average time spent watching by African-Americans in the demo rose by 56% with white viewership rising by 43% in the past decade.
The NBA also has one of the youngest fan bases among all the sports with 43% of the audience under 35.
Here some interesting factoids about the consumer habits of each sport’s fans as presented in the report:
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid NBA fans are:
30% more likely to have rented a car in the past 12 month
45% more likely to have eaten at a fast food restaurant 10-plus times in the past month
53% more likely to have spent more than $100 on athletic shoes in the past year
Top NBA advertisers are: State Farm, Sprint Wireless, Taco Bell, Kia Motors, Samsung Galaxy
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid NFL fans are:
17% more like to plan on buying furniture in the next 12 month
27% more likely to have spent more than $100 on fine jewelry
47% more likely to have drank a beer in the past week
Top NFL advertisers are: Bud Light, Chevy Silverado, Verizon Wireless, McDonald’s and State Farm.
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid MLB fans are:
20% more likely to have used a car rental company in the past year
22% more likely to have gone on a cruise in the past three years
70% more likely to have spent more than $100 on sports equipment in the past year
Top MLB advertisers are: Chevrolet Silverado, Budweiser, Taco Bell, Geico and T-Mobile
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid NHL fans are:
15% more likely to own both a tablet and a smartphone
29% more likely to have spent $5,000 or more on home improvements in the past year
45% more likely to have taken a domestic flight three times or more in the past year
Top NHL advertisers are: Discover, Geico, MyCleanPC.com, Verizon Wireless, Bud Light
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid MLS fans are:
46% more likely to have taken three or more domestic air round-trip flights in the past year
49% more likely to plan on buying or selling a house, condo or co-op in the next year
99% more likely to have drank an energy drink in the past week
Top MLS advertisers are: Adidas, Continental Tires, Microsoft Windows, Volkswagen Passat and Century 21 Realtors
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid NASCAR fans are:
17% more likely to have at least three vehicles in their household
20% more likely to plan to buy a high-definition television in the next year
31% more likely to have contributed money towards veterans associations in the past year
Top NASCAR advertisers are: Sprint, KFC, Nationwide Insurance, Cialis, Budweiser
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid PGA fans are:
28% more likely to have drank diet soda in the past week
31% more likely to have gone to a sit-down restaurant at least five times in the past month
66% more likely to have purchased cholesterol medication
Top PGA advertisers are: FedEx, Mastercard, TaylorMade SLDR Golf Clubs, Cialils, Aflac
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid NCAA basketball fans are:
31% more likely to have bought computer hardware/software in the past year
32% more likely to own stocks
41% more likely to have drank whiskey in the past month
Top NCAA advertisers are: Capital One, Bud Light, Southwest Airlines, AT&T and Allstate
Compared to the average U.S. adult, avid NCAA football fans are:
32% more likely to have had an energy drink in the past week
34% more likely to have gone to a quick service restaurant at least 10 times in the past month
42% more likely to have requested overnight delivery services in the past year
Top advertisers for NCAA football are: AT&T, Taco Bell, Geico, Capital One and Home Depot.