The relationship between television viewership and advertising content in Australian football broadcasts

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Communication and Sport, 2016, 4 (1), pp. 82 - 101
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© The Author(s) 2014. The traditional view of football fans, especially in a country such as Australia, has often been an unflattering one, with fans cast as being young, male, and with a beer in one hand. This article performed a demographic analysis of television viewership within Australia’s two largest football codes, the Australian Football League and the National Rugby League, to explore the demographics of this audience more closely. This was coupled with an advertising content analysis of corresponding football telecasts to consider the degree of synchronicity between audience and advertising. The article concludes both codes have an older, male-orientated audience skew. However, given that approximately 40% of the audience is female, both codes can lay claim to a more even-gender share of viewership than might be expected, given the highly masculine and physical nature of both sports. Notably, in-game advertising largely reflects its audience, with the majority of the advertisers selling products that appeal to both men and women. Commercial breaks within the broadcasts of both codes were also found to be strongly concentrated towards a small number of leading advertisers.
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