Rio 2016 to be the ‘Stay-at-Home Olympics’ for TV fans


Fans of this year’s Olympic Games are more likely to enjoy the action from their sofa than at the stadium, reveals Adobe’s latest Adobe Digital Insights (ADI) study.

The analysis, using Adobe Analytics and Adobe Social tools, shows that the volume of flights booked to Rio de Janeiro in the first six months of the year is trending considerably below that which preceded the 2014 World Cup (also hosted in Brazil), despite the 2016 Rio Olympics offering twice as many tickets—7.5 million[1]—as the World Cup two years ago. Fears surrounding the Zika virus, widely discussed on social media over the last months, are likely contributing to the slow uptake of travel by Olympic fans.

For marketers, reaching the Olympics’ huge global audience will have to take into account consumers catching up on the Games from their homes or—as is increasingly the case with sports content in markets like Europe or the US—from mobile devices such as phones or tablets. A recent ADI Europe Best of the Best report reveals that, across the five European countries surveyed, consumers report owning an average of six connected devices for personal use, with three devices actively used on a daily basis—most of these likely to be deployed by consumers as they follow the action in Rio.

“The Rio Olympics are shaping up to be the ‘Stay-at-Home’ Olympics, presenting marketers with a unique opportunity to reach a global audience who will be consuming the Games across a multitude of digital channels and devices,” commented Becky Tasker, Managing Analyst, Adobe Digital Insights. “Marketing has never been better poised to deliver personalised brand experiences, at scale and across any device, to a large and diverse set of audiences, as these Olympic Games may very well prove.”

Social Gold for the USA, Silver for Great Britain

As expected, social buzz around the Olympics continues to increase in the run up to the Games, with 39,000 average daily social mentions of the Olympics in June and 64,000 mentions in July. When it comes to fan engagement with the Games in social media, the US is driving the highest engagement globally, according to an ADI FanScore which measures fans’ sentiment towards their national Olympic teams on social channels. In Europe, Great Britain leads the way with the highest fan engagement, followed by France, Sweden and Germany.

Meanwhile, Great Britain’s Tom Daley is by far the most discussed Olympian on social media in Europe, with almost 20,000 mentions in the four months leading up to the Games, followed by compatriots Mo Farah and Jessica Ennis-Hill. The Dutch cyclist Tom Dumoulin and German footballer Julian Brandt also rank highly, with over 5,000 mentions each during the same period.


But on this measure Europe also lags considerably behind the US, where Olympian Ashton Eaton commands the highest social media buzz with 422,300 mentions since April—more than any other athlete in the world, and four times more than any other US athlete.

Adobe Digital Insights: 2016 Rio Summer Olympics Insights

• 86,000 flights booked to Rio and surrounding airports from 2014 through July 15, 2016
• 4.8 million social mentions relating to Olympics and World Cup (April – mid-July 2016)
• 76 million visits to online retail sites selling Olympics and soccer related sporting
equipment (2013 – 2015)

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