TOUCH FOOTBALL REACHING AUDIENCE OF MILLIONS!

first_imgThe profile of touch football in Australia is continuing to grow, with the latest media watch statistics showing touch football news has reached around 9 million people in the first three months of this year. Australian Touch Association CEO, Bill Ker says the statistics are both exciting and also interesting for the development and promotion of touch football in the media arena. “The Australian Touch Association has embarked on a twelve month media watch campaign to obtain an understanding of the extent of mentions the sport has in the media nationally,” says Mr Ker. “”The media for the past three months has been extensive with a wide reach nationally.” “It was also determined to extend the boundaries of the watch to cover New Zealand as well, because this will enable the ATA to not only quantify the media coverage in Australia but compare it with coverage from the other largest international member of the Federation of International Touch,” explains Mr Ker. The month of March saw touch football receive 138 mentions in the print, radio, television or online media. This was double the number of mentions for the months of January and February. In terms of audience numbers, it is estimated that these 138 stories reached almost 3.2 million people. This result, combined with the results recorded for January and February, shows touch football news has reached around 6.4 million people this year alone through the forms of print, radio or television. Mr Ker says the internet is another big winner in terms of coverage, with the ATA website recording a record number of hits in recent months. “Especially pleasing for the ATA is the homepage hits of over 3.5 million since November last year. The month of March produced 40,000 hits short of 1 million, which is a direct reflection of the interest the NTL generates. The ATA has studied the usage patterns of the homepage and is aiming the direction of the homepage information towards servicing those usage trends,” Mr Ker highlights. Since the beginning of the year almost 2.6 million hits have been recorded by the ATA, while at the peak of the NTL competition over 65,000 hits were recorded in just one day. It also needs to be mentioned that these statistics on internet usage relate purely to the ATA website and do not include statistics on the other international, state and local websites, who have also noticed an improvement in their website hits. Therefore these statistics can be said to be just the tip of the iceberg! By far the biggest improver in media coverage of touch was the number of television news stories. The month of March saw 20 touch football news stories produced, being primarily in state and regional news broadcasts. This number is also almost double the total number for January and February combined. In terms of audience numbers, the television coverage is estimated to have reached just over 500,000 for January and February, and over 800,000 for the month of March. The print media, which includes local, regional, state and national newspapers, reached the largest audience, with 83 stories published and an estimated number of almost 2.2 million readers. Wagga Wagga, Yass and several Western Australian media outlets are doing especially well, receiving regular coverage of their local and regional events in print and on radio and television. The Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast are other areas becoming more regular in the coverage touch football receives there. Coffs Harbour and the NTL’s were also successful, with the tournament being reported on the daily regional television news bulletins, as well as securing print and radio stories. With regional media outlets always searching for news stories, especially those of local interest, it is important for the ATA and all state and local organisations to continue to look for opportunities for touch football development through the media. “All in all the ATA is very pleased with the results of the media watch and the homepage usage and looks forward with confidence to a wider awareness of this great sport in the forthcoming months,” says Mr Ker. Rachel Moyle, 0422233165last_img read more