How can brands benefit from Brazilians’ love of traditional sports at Rio 2016?

January 16, 2015
3 min read

When it comes to the next Olympic Games, to be held in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro in 2016, new research from Mintel finds Brazilians are more likely to be drawn to tradition rather than the niche.

Perhaps unsurprisingly given the country’s heritage and traditional passion for the sport (not to mention its hosting of the 2014 FIFA World Cup) the majority of Brazilians who intend to watch Olympic events plan to follow football matches, with 71% stating that they will do so.

Behind soccer, some 69% of Brazilians who plan to watch the Olympics say they will tune into the opening ceremony of the Games. As a communal celebration of the country hosting and the countries involved, as well as a typically high-energy visual spectacular, the ceremony is expected to appeal to large numbers of people in Brazil.

The majority of Brazilians who intend to watch Olympic events plan to follow football matches, with 71% stating that they will do so.

Third on the list is volleyball with 44% of Brazilians who plan to watch the Games expecting to follow the sport, in which Brazil has achieved a gold medal in the past (at Athens in 2004).

However, Mintel’s research shows that when it comes to non-traditional sports such as hockey, fencing and water polo, only 12% of Brazilians who intend to watch the Olympics plan to follow these. A lack of identification with sports that are seen as exclusive and expensive is one reason for this low engagement.

It is important, then, for brands and companies looking to target Brazilian consumers during the Olympics to tie their products, services and marketing campaigns into specific associations with specific events.

Drilling down, Mintel has found that there are clear areas to identify the differences between men and women: Men tend to prefer football (82% vs 58% of women), athletics (33% vs 20%), and basketball (30% vs 19%), while women have a clear preference for gymnastics (45% vs 28% of men), and the opening ceremony (74% vs 65%).

Beauty and personal care brands can look to target men by focusing on elements typically associated with football, athletics and basketball: tenacity, force and strength. Male shampoos, deodorants, shaving products and haircare products would all see potential benefits through branded tie-ins with teams and individuals in these areas.

Products and marketing focused on female consumers, on the other hand, would have more effect during events such as gymnastics – and emphasising qualities such as grace and smoothness that underline the product benefits (such as the effects of skin moisturiser) as well as echoing the associations with the gracefulness and fluidity of gymnastics, could result in lucrative rewards


For more information on Mintel’s World Cup and Olympic Games – Brazilian Attitudes towards Major Events – Brazil, 2014 report click here.

Simon Moriarty is Mintel’s Head of Emerging Markets Research, and since joining Mintel in 2007 has worked as a News Analyst, Senior Trends Analyst, and as Head of Product Development for Mintel’s Reports and Trends products.

Simon Moriarty
Simon Moriarty

Simon is the EMEA Director of Trends, responsible for content, client servicing and commercial support across the region.

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