Growing Interest in Women’s Sports Paves Way for Advertising Potential

EDO’s Women’s Sports TV Outcomes report recently revealed a significant growth in television advertisements during women’s sports programs, including the WNBA, NCAA basketball, and tennis. The report showed that TV advertisements have doubled in efficiency year over year, highlighting the increasing potential for marketers to leverage women’s sports to achieve their business objectives.

“Naturally, the growing interest in women’s sports presents a major opportunity for TV advertisers,” said Laura Grover, SVP, Head of Client Solutions, EDO. “After all, live sports have consistently been the TV programs most successful at driving consumers to engage with brands that advertise during them — generating key outcomes like online searches that are proven predictors of future sales.”

Live sports broadcasts, particularly those featuring women’s sports, have consistently demonstrated their effectiveness in driving consumer engagement with brands that advertise during them. This engagement has translated into tangible outcomes, such as increased online searches and reliable predictors of future sales. The potential benefits for advertisers are significant, encouraging them to tap into the growing viewership and enthusiasm surrounding women’s sports and effectively leverage this platform to achieve their business goals.

“Women athletes like Coco Gauff and Iowa basketball star Caitlin Clark are powerful brand representatives during the ad breaks, delivering strong results for brands like New Balance, State Farm, and more,” Grover added. “As women’s sports continue to gain popularity, this opportunity will only grow more appealing for advertisers.”

Tennis programs such as the women’s U.S. Open and Wimbledon took the two top spots for women’s sports programming in EDO’s Women’s Sports TV Outcomes report highlights. The programs are outpacing the average primetime broadcast performance by 53% and the average cable advertisement by 51%. WNBA has seen an extensive increase in ad engagement, up 7% from the 2022 season, and the same with the finals and playoffs, increasing +23% and +30%, respectively. Even male brands like Old Spice and Hims have thrown their hat into the WNBA advertising ring, rising 134% and 51%.

Additionally, sportswear and apparel brands like Nike grew 16%, followed by Vuori, which showed an increase of 8%, then Puma, which surged by +62%, and finally Adidas, which led with a remarkable growth of +69%. An aspect of these numbers that is worth mentioning is that NIL has allowed women college athletes to establish brand deals with these sportswear brands. For example, Caitlin Clark signed with Nike, LSU gymnast Livvy Dunne signed with Vuori, and Stanford’s Cameron Brink entered into a partnership with New Balance.

Clark’s collaboration with State Farm has proven exceptionally impactful, with her ads witnessing a remarkable 46% surge in engagement since late 2023. This surge surpasses the engagement levels seen in other State Farm campaigns, underscoring Clark’s effectiveness as a brand ambassador. Beyond her prowess on the basketball court, Clark’s influence highlights the significant role of athlete endorsements in driving consumer engagement and brand awareness.

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