Formula One’s first year of ownership from the US based Liberty Media has shown positive growth all round, capitalising on the ever growing social media market.

With the new owners starting to embrace the media formats which the Bernie Ecclestone-led FOM had all but ignored, viewership across traditional formats such as TV has marginally increased while social media blossomed in 2017.

Thanks to the push on social media, Formula One became the fastest growing sport online in 2017 with interaction increasing by 54.9% in comparison to 2016’s numbers with the sport attracting 11.9 million followers on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Facebook videos were evidently the most watched with minutes viewed increasing by a staggering 1600% compared to 2016, mainly due to qualifying and race highlights. Videos proved popular on Twitter too with a 165% increase in year-on-year views with Formula One’s Instagram followers increasing by 93% to 3.8 million.

For TV viewers, the top 20 markets saw 1.4 billion people tune in to Formula One programs through the year, increasing viewership numbers by 6.25% over 2016. China produced the largest percentage development of the year, with TV viewership growth to 42.2%.

The top four markets showed growth in absolute figures; the biggest grower being Italy which showed an increase of 19.1% in viewership, something which could be attributed to the resurgence of Ferrari in 2017. Brazil remained the biggest market with 76 million viewers tuning in on TV despite dropping 1.6% compared to 2016.

Unique viewership didn’t decrease for the first time 2010, growing by 2.4% but with some major gains in certain markets like Mexico (22.6%), Italy (16.7%) and the USA (13%).

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Jordan Mulach

Journalist at MotorsportM8
Canberra born and raised journalist. Studying Sports Media. iRacing addict