UK Consumers Talking About London 2012 Gradually Increasing

By Community | May 1, 2012

UK consumers are talking more and more with their friends and relatives about the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic games, but the rise in buzz about the games is very gradual, according to the latest findings by Keller Fay Group.

To date, football remains a much bigger talking point, particularly among men and many traditional sport fans. Buzz is also much weaker outside ofLondon and the South-East.

These are the findings of the latest consumer research on word of mouth by the Keller Fay Group. They are based on new, just released information from Keller Fay’s TalkTrack Britain study, an ongoing research programme which tracks word of mouth in the UK on a continuous basis. It is the only such research that looks at both offline as well as online conversation and was launched in the UK in July 2011.

During April 2012, 20% of UK consumers said they had discussed the Games over the previous 24 hours, which is up slightly on the March figure (18%) and considerably above the levels recorded in the latter half of 2011 (8-10%). As the Games approach, buzz will of course increase, but at this stage we are some way off from the Games capturing the attention of the entire nation.

The 20% buzz figure compares with 25-30% who typically discuss Premier League football in a 24-hour period. More broadly, issues such as holidays, shopping, food/diet and money/economic issues are generally more widely discussed.

Encouragingly for London 2012, those discussing the games are not necessarily hardcore sports fans, with women almost as likely to discuss the Games as men. But the downside is that many of the traditional sporting audience – football and rugby fans in particular – are currently more focussed on their own teams and leagues. So perhaps attention will shift to the Olympics once the football and rugby seasons finally close.

The other challenge facing LOCOG is how to engage those living far away from London and other Olympic venues. People living in London itself are around three times more likely to discuss the Games than those in Scotland or NE England.

In summarising the research results, Steve Thomson, Managing Director of Keller Fay UK, said “It’s clear that excitement aboutLondon 2012 is building, but at the moment traditional sports – football especially – are hard to dislodge from getting the main attention around the nation’s kitchen and pub tables. In England, this week has started with the focus on Roy Hodgson, and it seems that until the summer itself the Olympics aren’t yet top of the agenda.”

The Keller Fay Group is the first full-service market research company focused exclusively on word of mouth (WOM) and brand advocacy.