Breaking Barriers And Building Audiences: Strategies To Enhance The Viewership Of Australian Women’s Sports
MOS talks to YouGov’s Tom Parish on the key strategies to unlock the potential and foster greater engagement for Women’s sports in Australia.
The FIFA Women’s World Cup has taken center stage on televisions across the globe, captivating hearts and minds with the brilliance of women’s sport. Among the competition, the Matildas’ have emerged as true trailblazers, shattering audience records and igniting their nation in support.
The groundbreaking audience records are no small feat, with mediocre viewership statistics being an all-too-familiar story for female athletes and sporting teams. YouGov’s 2023 study on ‘Women’s Sport Viewership’ analyzes the viewership numbers of major Australian sports leagues, and compares their male and female counterparts. YouGov’s Tom Parish explains that, “as much as we’re seeing growth in interest and awareness, there’s still a long way to go in terms of driving viewership. It’s one thing to say you’re a fan of a particular sport, but it’s another thing to actually sit down and spend an hour of your weekend watching it. Let alone doing that every week throughout a season.”
Insights into viewership are invaluable as the world tunes in to watch the elite women footballers leave their undeniable mark on history. Investigating key perceptions and barriers as to why sports fans may not watch women’s sport, “the report is designed for anyone in the industry, identifying unique challenges for stakeholders, rights holders, broadcasters and media owners alike” says Tom.
Tom emphasises, “with viewership ultimately driving the growth of sport, it serves as a key indicator of support and success.” YouGov’s report identifies 10 key strategies to boost viewership of women’s sport, ensuring that the Matildas’ momentum doesn’t end here. “It considers audience consumption habits, perceptions, and barriers to effective promotion. Industry professionals can leverage these insights and tools to help level the playing field.”
“It’s not that Australians don’t want to consume women’s sport, it’s that audiences are facing barriers to accessing it,” adds Tom. The success of the Ministry of Sport’s recent Women in Sport Summit attests to the nation’s desire to watch. Audiences are also enjoying the country’s first season of free-to-air televised NRLW, with more teams and supporters than ever before.
Whether you’re a soccer or a football fan, there’s no denying that Australia wants, and needs to show up for these Aussies. Tom is eager to follow how “the Matilidas’ viewership success further translates into ongoing support for the A-League Women and other female codes.”
While our athletes pave the way for generations of Aussie women’s sports stars to come, this report couldn’t have come at a better time. To help supporters and industry professionals understand what it’s going to take to get our athletes the recognition they deserve.
Breaking Barriers And Building Audiences: Unlock Strategies to Enhance Viewership of Australian Women’s Sports – Access the Full YouGov Report Now
Article by Lexie Nothdurft