A Tale of Two Fans: Rugby World Cup Final

A Tale of Two Fans: Rugby World Cup Final

Aussie rugby fans are posh and New Zealand fans are more ‘down to earth’, what does this all mean for brands? In this opinion piece Darren ring, insights manager APAC, Exponential takes us through what types of brands can piggyback off the Rugby World Cup final this weekend between Australia and New Zealand.

Karen Terranova
Posted by Karen Terranova

There are probably a few empty desks in media-land this week as the luckiest amongst us are entertained at Twickenham for the final of the Rugby World Cup.

Not the fairy tale ending the host nation – and the many Brits in our industry wanted – and we can be sure they will be cheering on the Kiwis (although they cheered loudly for us to beat Argentina for reasons that are clear to anyone old enough to remember the Falklands conflict).

But there can only be one winner and come Monday some very sore heads and either elation or disappointment for one nation. Win or lose we wanted to find out more about what makes Australian and New Zealand rugby fans tick – and given our industry – what type of brands may be able to benefit from some piggyback marketing to the winners and losers.

Our proprietary eX Advertising Intelligence Platform, tracks actual online behaviour across one of the world’s largest digital media platforms, so we looked at the online behaviour of approximately 60,000 Australian and 75,000 New Zealand rugby fans in April this year. And this is what we found.

First off, it’s not surprising that Australian Rugby fans have a reputation for being solidly middle to upper class old school tie types. Our data showed that compared to the average Australian sports fan, rugby fans are 95 per cent more likely to show an interest in Cirque De Soleil, 87 per cent more interested in Jazz and 79 per cent in ballet and dance.

In contrast All Black fans appear much more down to earth, being drawn to family orientated entertainment – they are 370 per cent more likely to be interested in live family attractions and 244 per cent more likely to be interested in Walt Disney Pictures. New Zealand Fans were also more interested in the ballet and theatre than the average sports fan but overall their preferences suggested that in New Zealand, Rugby is more of a family outing than in Australia.

Seemingly confirming that Wallabies fans are a sophisticated lot compared to the average sports fan, rugby fans are far more likely to be interested in what one might classify as posh toys. These fans are 89 per cent more interested in yachts and Land Rovers and 77 per cent more interested in luxury cars. It’s unsurprising that they also have a keen eye on the economy and real estate than the average punter.

Possibly putting them in the category of a typical elite dinner party guest, Wallabies fans are a whopping 520 per cent more likely to have an interest in investing in commodities and 95 per cent more likely to be interested in real estate sales – indicating an audience of investors which may correlate with their high-brow tastes.

New Zealand rugby fans may be more down to earth but they also have an eye on high end luxury cars being 101 per cent more likely than the average Kiwi sports fan to be interested in Mercedes Benz and 80 per cent more interested in Audis. But whilst they may have the money to afford them they aren’t interested in the slick suits and vintage champagnes to match. New Zealand fans are 561 per cent less likely than the average kiwi sports fan to express an interest in men’s clothes whilst Aussie fans were 108 per cent more likely to be interested.

Similarly, All Blacks fans won’t be celebrating or drowning their sorrows with a cheeky Pinot, being less likely than the average fan to be into wine and 267 per cent more likely to be interested in beer. Compare this to Australian fans who are 87 per cent more interested in wine and 103 per cent less likely to seek out beer and you really begin to see the differences and the type of brands that could have some fun with post final result tactical marketing.

Come Monday morning one of these groups will be plunged into despair. Our data indicates that the majority of New Zealanders will be glum on Monday if our boys bring  home the Cup but if the All Blacks, current favourites, are successful then it is more likely to be a smaller number of well dressed, predominantly male, well educated fans who will be crying into their vintage Grange instead.