Sports Betting Can Boost TV Engagement, Says Study

(Image credit: NBC Sports)

NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y.—The legalization of sports betting could open up a number of doors for TV broadcasters, according to a new study from Horowitz Research.

“The State of Sports Betting: New Frontiers, New Technology and New Audiences” takes a broad look at how the legalization of sports betting can be a positive for a wide variety of industries, and lays out a number of examples specific to the TV industry.

First, sports betting boosts audience engagement. When a person makes a bet, Horowitz found that 80% are more likely to watch the sport, but it also leads them to watch news about it (77%). This increases the potential for increased ad revenue as well.

(Image credit: Horowitz Research)

There is also an opportunity for new content for broadcasters and sports networks around sports betting, Horowitz shares, as sports bettors are interested in news and commentary specifically around the analysis and results of betting. Some broadcasters, like NBC Sports, have already created some special programming around sports betting.

MVPDs can incorporate sports betting as an additional revenue stream, as Horowitz says that there is very high interest in sports betting features embedded in cable, satellite or other platforms. This includes 84% of respondents saying they would be at least somewhat interested if they could place a sports bet directly on the TV while watching the game.

“Our data show that the top resources used to inform sports bets are major media sports brands, including ESPN, Fox Sports, NBC Sports and CBS Sports, along with league websites and Twitter,” said Adriana Waterston, Horowitz’s senior vice president of insights and strategy. “This highlights an enormous opportunity for these brands to capitalize on their already-engaged audience and their vast reach.”

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