The sports industry is a massive space that revolves around health, fitness, and entertainment. It has a diverse audience based on age, nationality, culture, and countless other parameters. It’s a dynamic sector that is constantly changing. Hence, marketing efforts must keep pace to stay relevant.
As the digital revolution continues, marketers are racing against time to identify and leverage the next big trend to stay ahead of this ever-evolving market. And while foreseeing the future is a crucial skill, a lot depends on one’s ability to constantly adapt to the changing trends.
Five Major Changes in Sports Marketing Trends
Although several marketing trends could transform the future of the sports industry, we’ll discuss the top 5 most likely candidates.
Focus on eSports
While sports marketing was primarily focused on traditional sports like football, cricket, horse racing, motorsports, etc., the emphasis recently shifted towards eSports. As of 2021, the popularity of eSports has skyrocketed, and the industry is projected to be worth between €650 million and €1 billion annually by 2030. The younger generation is into eSports, which indicates the onset of a revolution in the sports industry.
Active Female Participation
Since sports is a reflection of society, it isn’t surprising that women are slowly taking up important positions in the field. As women’s sports take precedence, the female audience is gradually increasing. Events like women’s football tournaments are very popular among female viewers. Therefore, future marketing strategies must take the varied audience into account. Big brands have begun designing campaigns with that in mind. A few examples include the British Government’s “The Girl Can” initiative, and She Moves Mountains by North Face.
Penetrating Communities Organically
The sports community comprises several elements like fans, enthusiasts, technicians, and professionals involved in different fields. Intercepting these communities will be a crucial task for sports marketers since it’s a huge market. While there are several ways of reaching out to this group, using social media influencers is an effective solution. Organically penetrating private communities on Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram will be an important business strategy in the future.
While influencer marketing is already popular in the sports industry, there are several ways the trend could further explore in the coming years. Super influencers will continue playing an important role in future marketing trends, albeit with a few subtle changes. For instance, while big brands currently use celebrities for product endorsements on traditional media outlets, the digital trend could see a major shift in focus to social media platforms.
The younger generation is focused on social responsibility. Therefore, brands must spread the right message to remain popular. For instance, environmental sustainability is a major point of debate, and social media is rife with related discussions. Several studies show that people today are willing to pay extra for a brand’s products or services to simply reward its commitment to social responsibilities. Therefore, every digital marketing agency that knows how the game is played creates marketing strategies with sustainability in mind.