When it comes to watching soccer on television, U.S. Hispanics are a force in driving the sport's viewership, according to Nielsen.
Sports viewership typically varies by race and ethnicity, and for soccer, U.S. Hispanic viewers accounted for the vast majority of viewership in 2017. In fact, Hispanics accounted for an overwhelming 68% of soccer’s viewership during the year, compared to about 12% of viewership to all sports.
Over 97 million people watched at least six minutes of a soccer match last year, and over 32 million of them were Hispanic.
When looking at Hispanic TV homes in the U.S. exclusively, about 61% of their residents have watched at least six minutes of a soccer game—more than any other race or ethnicity, according to Nielsen.
The 61% reach percentage is nearly double that of the U.S. overall percentage. But soccer doesn’t just appeal to Hispanic viewers. In 2017, at least a quarter of all measured races/ethnicities watched soccer, including 30% of African-American viewers and 25% of Asian-American viewers.
Looking deeper into the Hispanic soccer viewer reveals a unique profile—they’re younger than non-Hispanic viewers and Spanish-language dominant with 42% of Hispanic soccer viewers under 35 and 31% of Non-Hispanic soccer viewers under 35.
The compositional breakdown of soccer’s audience reveals that 42% of Hispanic soccer viewers are under the age of 35, compared to 31% of non-Hispanic viewers.
Of these young viewers, over a quarter of them are within the key buying demographic (18-34). Moreover, 16% of them are in the 2-17 demo—a group vital to growth and long-term sustainability. For non-Hispanics, about 10% of viewership stemmed from the 2-17 demo.
About 40% of their soccer viewing was done on Spanish language networks, a sizeable portion considering the language difference. When looking at Hispanic viewers who speak mostly English, the share of their soccer viewing on Spanish-language networks ballooned to 83%. In essence, Spanish-language networks reached their main audience by televising soccer matches, but with the added benefit of bringing in adjacent English-speaking crowds as well.
Soccer, as it seems, successfully crosses language barriers in U.S. television programming and can bring advertisers closer to the booming Hispanic demographic, no matter what their language preference, according to Nielsen.