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October 21 saw the launch of our latest study, the Truth About Fans. Early this year, we found that 70% of people globally were looking forward to the games in Brazil, and we at McCann were no exception, especially since it presented our Truth Team with a prime opportunity to study sports fans. We all know that with the advent of technology and social media, fan behavior has changed drastically in the last few years, but we wanted to delve deeper into these changes, and reach the heart of what it means for brands.

For brands, talking to these new fans may sound daunting, but one thing about them hasn’t changed: fans are the most likely to vocalize their passion, evangelize it to others and ultimately, spend more than non-fans. Once brands adjust to the more complex environment in which fans operate, and understand the rules of engagement, they stand to reap the rich rewards of their advocacy and loyal custom.

In the study we cover: (1) How fans are moving from Ticket Holders to Commentators, from Neighborhood Experts to Global Gurus and from Fortune Tellers to Data Junkies. (2) The all-new shared language of fans and how brands can best engage in this new era of fandom.

Download the report here and also take a look at the blog post on the Truth Central website for a summary of the study and information about our Truth About Fans launch in New York.

Methodology: The Truth About Fans is based on qualitative interviews with people watching the 2014 FIFA World Cup in 24 markets globally. Quantitative data was supplied by the Truth About Globalization study, which was fielded in 29 markets including Trinidad and Tobago. Lastly, a focus group was conducted with American teenage soccer fans to understand young fans’ evolving attitudes and behaviors.