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Reaching The Sports Fan

by Ingrid Swan

published on 2017-04-04 05:28:00


Sports are a major part of the US culture, with roughly 6 in 10 Americans identifying themselves as sports fans. Sports undeniably bring people and businesses together making the market for commerce related to sports is enormous. 

Michigan.com is exploring new ways to reach these fans with marketing tactics that incorporate content, video, social media and live events to extend the connection beyond the games.




We have identified the Michigan.com target audience of sports fan to be: 

  • 66% Male 
  • HHI $75k+
  • Age 35-49
  • College educated
  • Engages in all types of sports including: hockey, baseball, basketball, football, soccer, tennis, car racing, running (Detroit Free Press Chemical Bank Marathon!)
  • Use 2+ devices for viewing digital video displays, update on sport scores or to watch sports live
  • Frequently dines at sit down and fast food restaurants
  • Social drinker, likely to buy beer, wine and liquor
  • Purchases athletic goods and clothing
  • Heavy traveler for leisure and business, and stays at a wide variety of hotels (economy to luxury)
  • Shops at grocery stores, and are among heavier grocery spenders

By understanding this audience, we can connect and engage them with the sports teams they love by developing and aligning them with content and events to enhance their personal connection in multiple ways.

Video Content

We know that monthly video consumption in the US grew YOY 3% to 222M monthly video viewers, including 81% of all Internet users and 68% of the total population. Due to the video sharing capability across the Internet this content will keep the engagement, reach and penetration active beyond the game and have consumers looking for more. 

YouTube has outperformed the other networks in introducing new products (18% of overall impact) and fueling conversions (14% of overall impact). YouTube watch time for sports in a 12 month period exceeded total watch for time for all the estimated content ever broadcast by ESPN by 30X!

Based on research of YOY growth in video search and interaction, three content areas have surfaced to enhance the sports fan marketplace.

  • Strategizing for the win including pre & post coverage
    • Commentary, recap, predictions
  • Team Spirit: Fashion, accessories and beauty
    • 60% YOY growth for search on game day fashion and beauty
  • Cooking up recipes, game day parties, specific menus for game day
    • 75% YOY growth for search on game day related recipes

Live Events

Integration of video content across multiple channels along with live events helps build audience relationships and earn the confidence of potential customers. Live events like the Detroit Free Press Chemical Bank Marathon offer an opportunity to interact with brands first hand allowing prospective consumers to engage with your brand, understand your company’s focus and personality and to have face-to face interaction with your company. This interaction is priceless as you build rapport with your target audience. 

Team Up With Michigan.com For The Winning Mix

For inquiries on how we can help your business reach and engage our sports fan audience, please contact us at Michigan.com or call 313.222.2775.

Submitted by Ingrid Swan, Michigan.com Client Strategy Manager.


Source: Scarborough 2016.2 (Detroit DMA); Michigan.com sports fan (attended any professional sporting event) have consumed The Detroit News or the Detroit Free Press content in print, online or e-reader platforms in the last 7 days. Sport scores updates & watch live sports on Internet/apps in the past 30 days. Viewed video displays past 30 days.
Source: http://www.thinkwithgoogle.com
Source: US digital users: The Emarketer Forecast for 2017