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Sport governing bodies need to diversify beyond pay-TV to grow audiences

Sport governing bodies need to diversify beyond pay-TV to grow audiences
July 9, 2019

A newly released report has highlighted that with younger generations increasingly favouring digital and social video content over linear broadcast TV sporting organisation need to adapt to engage with this audience.

The 2019 Global Video Trends Report, by cloud video specialists Grabyo, suggests that global sports organisations should move away from pay-TV exclusivity to maximise their audience growth as direct-to-consumer (DTC) and premier social media options continue to grow in demand.

Of those surveyed, 52% of the bell-weather ‘Millennial’ consumers stated that they would consider cancelling pay-TV subscriptions altogether within the next five years.

The Report states “the move to online streaming and social media does not signal the immediate death of TV, but it does signal what needs to change.

“Consumers want video services which are low-cost, available everywhere with a usage model that allows audiences to escape the TV schedule if they choose.”

Of the primary markets surveyed, the US, the UK, Australia, and Europe, YouTube, Facebook and Instagram lead the way, with data in Europe indicating that social video has higher cut through and usage compared to OTT channels (devices that go ‘over’ a cable box to give the user access to TV content).

The data also shows that social video is accelerating the adoption of OTT services, with 42% of consumers between the ages of 18 to 25 stating that they have looked to purchase online subscriptions to a streaming platform after watching social ads.

YouTube remains the sports rightsholders optimum platform, but three in 10 users say that they want to see more in-depth sports highlights on the content platform.

The report also claims that the majority of casual viewers favour digital platforms, with 25% of the market electing to view video content on a smartphone.

Across all genres, 50% of the consumer market pays for a video service online, versus 42% who purchase pay-TV video content, with sport representing the most-viewed video content for an average 46% of the total marketplace.

The Report also advises “much of the commentary about changing media viewing habits has focused on younger segments, the millennials and Gen Z.

“The results of this study show that mobile, social and online viewing is not restricted to younger demographic groups.

“All audiences under the age of 50 show a preference for OTT and mobile video.

“Flexibility, price and quality matter to consumers, something which is harder to deliver with the restrictions of linear TV.”

Click here to download the full report.

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