The war against the home sofa for sport is on

By Alice Leader

- Last updated on GMT

Sport-loving nation: it is claimed consumers would rather watch live sport at home than in the pub
Sport-loving nation: it is claimed consumers would rather watch live sport at home than in the pub

Related tags Pub Bar Sport

New research has revealed the sofa is the pub’s prime rival, with 87% of consumers choosing to watch sport in the comfort of their own home.

The new survey, commissioned by Stonegate Pub Company and Molson Coors, explored consumer habits and concerns regarding sports in the on-trade.

With live sport being a huge focus for the business, the two companies have a revealed how pubs can get the upper hand on the home sofa.

Stonegate sports marketing manager Stephen Cooper said: “This research has offered true insight into sports in the on-trade and has highlighted numerous ways in which we, as an industry, can improve the experience for customers.”

How to fight the sofa

According to 36% of consumers, atmosphere leads the way when choosing a venue to watch live sport.

Almost a third of those surveyed said the venue’s look and layout would influence their decision (32%) with a quarter (24%) stating the food and drink menu is also a key aspect that drives their location choice.

Cooper said sports lovers want venues to be fan-friendly zones where they can watch live sports with fellow supporters.

As a result of the new research, Stonegate has developed a six-step process to guarantee it wins against the sofa.

The process starts with the basics: offering a safe environment; great sports service and the right screen location to avoid obstructed vision – all factors that ranked high in customers’ responses.

Entice sports fans

Stonegate hopes this new approach will enhance the viewing experience and entice sports fans into their venues to watch the live action.

Cooper added: “Our venues have always been synonymous with sport, but this study has informed how we can be even better.”

While football remains the number one sport for the on-trade, interest in niche sports has also grown and gives venues the opportunity to differentiate themselves from other sports sites.

American sports bars are having an increasing impact on the UK’s bar industry with 70% of UK consumers stating they follow sports such as NFL American football, NBA basketball, plus darts and women’s football.

Bring fans together

The research also showed that 57% of consumers said they’d remain in a venue longer if there was a ‘shuffleboard’, while 44% said the same for ‘table football’.

The release of these findings coincides with the launch of Stonegate’s ‘We Love Sport’ app​.

It is a one-stop shop for sports fans looking to find the best venues across the UK to watch live sports, while earning loyalty rewards for every visit.

Cooper said the launch of their new sports app highlights nearby venues that show live sport, which they hope will bring fans together and building a strong sporting community.

Related topics Sport

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