LaLiga has claimed that new research shows the Spanish league is making “significant inroads” in Asia, including the key markets of China, India and Indonesia, long considered to be strongholds of rival the Premier League.
Unaided awareness of LaLiga increased by four percentage points in the three countries in the 12 months through to November 2018, according to market research company GfK.
The ongoing study conducted on behalf of LaLiga by GfK covers 10 countries across the continent, with a representative sample of 5,000 internet users between the ages of 16 and 69 years old taking part.
Javier Gomez, GfK’s Brand and Customer Experience Director, said: “In our experience with regard to brand tracking studies, growth in brand awareness of one percentage point in one year is a very good figure. The result obtained by LaLiga, with a rise of four percentage points in a single year, is extraordinary.”
The number of individuals who watched at least one LaLiga match per month increased from 59% to 62%, while the ‘net promoter score’, representing football fans who recommend LaLiga, improved from 30% to 33%.
Meanwhile, of those who prefer to watch LaLiga matches over any other sports or audiovisual content, 48% said that they do so due to the quality of the competition, while 40% cited their support of a team and 36% highlighted their support of a particular player.
Broader interest in football in China, India and Indonesia is also on the rise, according to GfK, with 52% of respondents in the three countries stating that they are “very interested” in football – up from 45% a year earlier. In Indonesia, the figure surged from 50% to 59% over the period in question.
Football also ranked as the most popular sport in Indonesia, the joint-first choice in China alongside basketball and the second-most popular sport in India, behind cricket.
Three years ago, in a bid to gain a greater foothold in Asia and overcome time-difference issues, LaLiga scrapped its tradition of staging big weekend matches late on Saturday and Sunday evenings by starting to schedule selected matches in lunchtime kick-off slots.
LaLiga has previously claimed that, from the 2015-16 season through to 2017-18, television audiences for the Spanish competition in the Asia-Pacific region rocketed by 70%.
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