Athlete and celebrity endorsement dollars are best spent when targeting a younger or minority sports or outdoor consumer in the U.S. That conclusion is one element of the recent SportsOneSource 2009 Brand Strength Report that measures how American consumers view sports or outdoor brands. But the study also found some more unexpected results, such as the importance of peer pressure on upper income consumers.
Report: Endorsements Most Important to Youth, Minorities
Roughly 25% of African American consumers that responded to the SportsOneSource Brand Strength survey said that athlete or celebrity endorsements were at least somewhat important when making brand purchase decisions. Nearly 12% of the African American consumers polled suggested that such endorsements were extremely important when making purchase decisions. Nearly 23% of Hispanic consumers polled said that the endorsements were at least somewhat important, including more than 10% that said that athlete or celebrity endorsements were extremely important when making purchase decisions related to sports or outdoor products.
Young teen-aged consumers were also more likely to respond favorably to endorsements, according to the SportsOneSource research report. Nearly 24% of survey respondents aged 12- to 14-years old said that athlete or celebrity endorsements were at least somewhat important when making brand purchase decisions related to sports or outdoor products. That percentage dipped to less than 17% for the 15- to 17-year-old group, but then rose steadily again as consumers grew into their mid-thirties. The influence of endorsements fell steadily for the age groups over 35 years of age.
The influence of what friends or peers wear on the purchase decisions of the consumers surveyed found some interesting trends as well. The male minority respondents were again more likely to be influenced by a peer group, with approximately 27% of both the African American and Hispanic male consumers suggesting that what their friends or peers wear was at least somewhat important in their purchase decisions of sports or outdoor products. Almost half of the teens aged 12- 17-years old surveyed mentioned that what their friends/peers wear is at least somewhat important on their influence when making their purchasing decisions.
“What surprised us most was the influence of peers on the purchase decisions of consumers,” said James Hartford, chief market analyst for The SportsOneSource Group. “We expected to see higher peer pressure with the teen group, but were surprised to see the keeping up with the Jones displayed in the upper income brackets.”
More than 20% of the survey respondents with household incomes over $125,000 said that what friends or peers wear was at least somewhat important to their purchase decisions. The group also had the highest percentage (8.4%) that felt the influence was most extremely important. No other income group had at least 20% suggesting that peer influence was important.
This data and much more are included in the just released Purchase Influence Report from The SportsOneSource Group. For more information on this report and other research available from The SportsOneSource Group, please call 704.987.3450 x110 or e-mail to research@SportsOneSource.com.