Gen Z has been responsible for all kinds of trends across a wide array of industries and markets, but one in particular that they’ve had an impact on is the entertainment industry. This generation took everything that people knew and loved about watching and consuming entertainment and gave it a digital more high-tech spin. We can see this clearly in how Gen Z has revolutionised the way people view sports, not just as a passing trend, but permanently. Let’s take a look at how Gen Z has been a game changer in terms of sports viewing habits.
Gen Z Doesn’t Believe in Being Tied to a Television Set
When you think about how people used to watch a big match or game, it traditionally involved sitting around a television set. And while you can certainly still choose to do that, Gen Z is rocking a new, more versatile way to watch live sports. Digital platforms are quickly taking over as the main source of live sports streaming options for Gen Z.
It makes sense when you think about it, as just about everyone owns a smartphone nowadays with instant access to the internet. Smartphones have improved in sound and video quality, making them more enjoyable than ever to use as an entertainment source. Using live streaming platforms means they can watch a game any time and from any place; they don’t have to worry about being in front of the television.
Where They Get Their Sports News is Also Changing
Die-hard sports fans tend to consume sports-related industry news, staying on top of the latest scores, stats, trades and deals. For Gen Zers, the most common place to get the news has now become platforms like TikTok, Instagram and YouTube. These aren’t news outlets, but it’s where Gen Zers spend a huge chunk of time online so it makes sense they’d also get the news from these platforms. These same platforms may also show game highlights, and snippets, also allowing them to stay tuned in.
They Become More Invested in the Game with Sports Betting
To add another level of excitement and make the games more immersive, sports betting can also be very popular with the Gen Z age group. If they’re watching all the stats, and have a favourite sport or team, it makes sense that they’d feel informed enough to place a bet. This is another area in which technology has appealed to Gen Zers and made things more streamlined and convenient.
They can place a bet using Apple Pay, for example, with a reputable online bookmaker or sportsbook. Typically, all that’s required is to create an account with that sportsbook. Because it’s quick and simple, they can have multiple bets active at a time, and ramp up the adrenaline when it comes to game day.
There Is an Interest in the Individual Athletes
Another way that sports viewing has shifted is that it’s no longer just about the game. Sure, Gen Z loves watching the big matches, but they have also become very interested in individual athletes too. What do these athletes do in their off-time, their travels, their homes, their lives and so forth? Some of the most-followed social media accounts out there are those of athletes, which may come as a surprise to many.
Cristiano Ronaldo, the Portuguese superstar footballer is an excellent example. He has one of the most followed Instagram accounts of all athletes in the world, with more than 539 million followers. That’s shocking when you think about it, as it’s more than half a billion people following one athlete.
But Ronaldo isn’t alone, as plenty of other professional athletes also have huge fan followings. Other athletes with massive lists of followers on Instagram include David Beckham, Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappé, Neymar Jr, and LeBron James to name a few.
Trends tend to be things that pop up quickly and catch on fast but don’t have lasting power. When it comes to the sports viewing habits of Gen Zers, it’s not just a trend; instead, we are seeing the times change permanently. They are shaping the future of what it means to watch and follow sports, as well as how to be a more invested fan digging deeper into the game and the athletes themselves.