The chicken and egg of women’s sport | WARC | The Feed
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The chicken and egg of women’s sport
The Women’s Euros 2022 has kicked off with a distinct lack of buzz compared to last year’s men’s tournament, but is that because people aren’t interested or because they don’t know it’s happening?
Why it matters
There is growing interest in women’s sport – the number of people watching three or more minutes of women’s sport coverage in Q1 2022 was almost three times that for Q1 2021.
But the main reason people don’t watch women-only sports competitions is simply because there is not enough media coverage around them. Research from GWI finds many non-engagers say female sport should be better promoted and get more attention.
There’s clearly an untapped audience that media owners can do more to address. The BBC is showing games in the UK, so that limits advertising opportunities, but brands can find fresh ways of exposing consumers to women’s sport – ones that focus on athletic ability and skills rather than appearance.
- There is a stark contrast between men’s and women’s sports: for example, 70% of European soccer fans watched the FIFA World Cup, compared to 22% who watched the Women’s World Cup.
- 16-24s are the most likely to say they don’t have the time to watch women’s sports or that they can’t find competitions. Media outlets and sports companies need to find ways to bring women’s sport to them, by offering games in ‘snackable’ portions and making sure they’re clearly available on streaming sites.
- Women are 27% less likely to say they typically watch games at a bar, and 17% less likely to attend an event in-person every six months. The sports industry can identify new ways to ensure women feel comfortable getting involved.
- Dark Horses, a creative agency for sport, warns that the tried and tested methods of marketing men’s sport are being changed or ignored when it comes to women’s sport as brands use the game to either make a bigger statement about themselves or tick a D&I box.
“Hero-ing female athletes or sponsoring female events should not be a D&I box-ticking exercise or a package add-on – it should be an opportunity to tell even better stories. So let’s start doing it" – Melissa Robertson, CEO of Dark Horses.
Sourced from GWI, Dark Horses, Sky Sports
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