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Survey: 55% Americans interested in streamed football

Fifty-five per cent of viewers say they would be interested in streaming games online instead of watching on cable, including 77 per cent of Millennials, according to a national survey commissioned by strategic communications and public relations firm Burson-Marsteller’s Fan Experience sports and entertainment speciality group, and fielded by research consultancy Penn Schoen Berland (PSB), to analyse viewers’ attitudes toward professional American Football, the Super Bowl and the halftime show.

Super Bowl viewers’ perceptions of the game and how they consume content and communicate with each other on social media are rapidly changing as a result of advances in technology. In addition to the shift in viewers watching games via streaming online, 29 per cent of viewers and 43 per cent of Millennials say they would be more likely to cancel their cable subscription if they could stream professional football games online.

“The ongoing transformation of the fan experience is just one instance of a global trend we are witnessing—across the board, consumers are being empowered by technology and demanding better, customisable content,” said Mike Fernandez, US CEO, Burson-Marsteller. “The age of the one-size-fits-all content package is over, and the future belongs to the fans.”

More than four in 10 viewers, and more than seven in 10 constant social media users (defined as viewers who check social media or news outlets more than once an hour via computer or mobile on a regular day) say that social media brings them closer to the game. Sixty per cent of viewers and 87 per cent of constant social media users say they are interested in the extra content brands provide on social media in addition to their commercials. Eighty-two per cent of viewers and 89 per cent of Millennials believe it is important for brands to demonstrate how they are giving back to their community in their Super Bowl commercials or marketing campaigns.

“The game plan is shifting into the hands of the fan, according to the findings of this year’s survey,” advised Jason Teitler, Chair of Burson-Marsteller Fan Experience. “The different ways in which fans experience the Big Game, and engage with others about the game, provide a variety of opportunities for brands to develop lasting, productive relationships with consumers by delivering content and access that most appeals to them.”

Key survey findings include:

Let’s Get Social

  • Constant social media users are most likely to say they love watching the halftime show (71 per cent vs. 58 per cent of viewers)
  • One in three constant social media users say they will use social media more often during the Big Game than they usually do
  • One in three viewers say that a commercial is what they are most likely to post about on social media during the game
  • Thirty-three per cent of viewers say that a commercial is what they are most likely to post about on social media during the game
  • More than 70 per cent of constant social media users say that social media brings them closer to:
    o Pro football
    o Other pro football fans
    o Brands that advertise during the Super Bowl
    o The game itself

Virtual Reality

  • Forty-eight per cent of viewers and 71 per cent of fantasy football players say they would be interested in watching the Super Bowl on a virtual reality (VR) headset
  • Forty-three per cent of viewers and 60 per cent of fantasy football players say virtual reality is the future for experiencing professional football games

The Big Game

  • Nearly two out of three Millennials say they prefer the game itself to the commercials or the halftime show
  • Sixty-five per cent of viewers say they remember last year’s game better than any other part of the broadcast
  • Seven in 10 total viewers (and nearly two in three Millennials) say that the game is their favourite part of the Super Bowl broadcast

“While the findings from this year’s survey demonstrate the huge role technology and social media are playing in how people view, interact and consume content, it will be interesting to track and see how fans actually view the game this year and interact with each other,” noted Curtis Freet, CEO of Penn Schoen Berland.

 

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