With live sport returning we wanted to take a look at what to expect from its return and we’ve taken some insight from our colleagues in TalkSPORT about just how popular sport is with the public.
This graph shows the digital listening for TalkSPORT on a Saturday between 12pm and 7pm when their GameDay live Premier League coverage takes place. The initial spike, at week 30 2019, is at the launch of their Premier League coverage last August where we can see audiences immediately treble. They remain consistent at that level, with the exceptions of the weeks of no Premier League matches (week 36, 40, 46) where it returns to the original level, highlighting the impact that live sport has.
Following some seasonal changes around Christmas we continue to see audience spikes for live matches right until week 12 when the Premier League was postponed due to COVID-19. Again the live sport audience disappears and audiences return to a remarkably consistent normal level.
So what can we expect to see as we return to live sport?
Well if last week is anything to go by the demand is still there with TalkSPORT2 up a significant 50% in reach W on W, driven by the live Bundesliga games and live horse racing from Hong Kong. There was a notable spike on Tuesday afternoon for the Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich match which confirms how much the public have missed live football.
Social distancing and fan safety will remain a challenge for big sporting events not just for now but into the foreseeable future, as highlighted by Leinster Rugby’s decision to have to cancel season ticket sales for next season.
That means that broadcasters may pick up even more demand for their live sports broadcasts as a cohort of loyal supporters who previously attended games look for a new way to follow their beloved team.
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Sources – Talksport Digital Listening Stats (13th May 19 – 31st May 20)