A majority of US males aged 13 to 21 (52%) now spend more time following non-traditional sports than traditional sports, according to research by Whistle Sports.
The millennial-focused broadcaster, which produces sports-related content for digital platforms, found in its study that 56% of Gen Z viewers believe that non-traditional sports are “more relevant to their generation than traditional sports”.
The US report, which was carried out in partnership with millennial research firm Cassandra, said that 90% of Gen Z males think there are many definitions of sports today, with 76% believing that practiced skills are more important to sports than physical activity.
“If brands want to connect with Gen Z, and see ROI on their marketing investments, it is crucial to understand how young audiences define and consume sports,” according to the research. “Most young men are frustrated that traditional sports are overloaded with marketing messages, and they watch highlights (55%) over full games (45%) to avoid ads.”
“Advertising in sports besides football, basketball, baseball, hockey and soccer has yet to pass the tipping point where it overwhelms; more than two-thirds of young men (69%) still say brands are a welcome part of non-traditional sports.”
Whistle Sports curates and distributes sports-related entertainment content, which that focuses on creativity, humour and skill, to platforms like YouTube, Facebook Watch, Snapchat and IGTV. Its YouTube channel has 1.2 million subscribers.