Market Overview

Motorsports Organizers and Sponsors Got Greater ROI This Year, According to a New Foresight Research Report

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ROCHESTER, Mich., Sept. 01, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Motorsports attendance and racing viewership among new car buyers rebounded during the most recent sales year, ending a downward trend on both measures over the past several years, according to the 2015 Motorsports Immersion Report™ from Foresight Research.  Compared to the prior year, race attendance among new vehicle buyers almost doubled to 9%, while TV race viewing jumped from 14% to 18%.

Chris Stommel, President at Foresight, says younger buyers returning to market is a major contributor to this reversal.  "Millennials are now buying new vehicles, and they attend motorsports races at nearly three times the rate of Boomers.  And although the generation gap narrows for motorsports viewership, Millennial buyers are still roughly 25% more likely than Boomers to watch races on TV."

"This pays dividends for new vehicle sales," Stommel adds.  "In sharp contrast to older buyers who rely more on their own prior experiences, Millennials are influenced by all forms of experiential marketing, including motorsports.  One-in-five Millennial buyers reported being influenced by racing during their recent new vehicle purchase process; that's double what we saw a year ago."

The report also reveals that one-quarter of racing-influenced buyers often visit auto-related websites simultaneously while watching racing on television and 70% have posted or blogged online about their new vehicle.  "This indicates motorsports delivers significant word of mouth and brand advocacy potential, as well as presenting unique cross-platform marketing opportunities for motorsports broadcasters, sanctioning bodies and sponsors," Stommel says.

Race fans give credit to a wide variety of sponsorship levels, with similar purchase influence reported regardless of whether a brand sponsored a team, league or drivers, ran TV commercials or sponsored "brought to you by" tags, or merely had onsite banners.     However, having a brand display or activation presence at a race is clearly key:  two-thirds of racing-influenced buyers who attended a race had visited an onsite display sponsored by their purchased brand.  This group was very active while at that display (about half participated in a ride & drive and/or spoke with a product advisor there, while roughly four-in-ten scheduled a test drive or picked up a brochure).

Importantly, motorsports races and events sold nearly 50% more vehicles during the 2014 sales year (versus the year prior), according to Foresight's proprietary ROI calculation.  While some of this is due to an overall increase in auto sales, the majority of the lift comes from a significantly more-influential motorsports marketing channel.

About Foresight Research – www.foresightresearch.com

Foresight Research specializes in syndicated and custom studies focusing on key influencers of purchase decisions in the automotive industry.  Since 2008, Foresight Research publishes syndicated reports each year that provide information, strategies and best practices to help auto companies, their partners, and auto dealers to build, position, and support marketing insights and actions. 

Contact: Nancy Walter Foresight Research 248.608.1870 x 18 nwalter@foresightresearch.com

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