Reports Media & Marketing

Fandom and identity For fans, entertainment goes beyond enjoyment of content

Report by Hanna Kahlert
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20,000 foot view:  Across entertainment, fandom is used to judge, predict, and generate successful commissioning and distribution strategies. Fandom indicates reliable audiences who will spend money on propositions and come back for more at the next instalment. It shows who will buy merchandise, attend shows and events, or purchase in-game cosmetics. Yet, for audiences, their fandom is far more than simply the feeling of ‘I like this thing’; it is a powerful indicator of identity, community, and personal preference. Creating hits requires an understanding of what matters to audiences and why. 

Key insights 

               of women aged            indicated that music was reflective of their identity, the highest rate of any category and all demographics, with the lowest being            of women aged            or higher 
  • For all            except music,            under-indexed for entertainment            reflective of their identities, while            over-indexed the most
  •            of audiences feel that the fanbases and scenes they are part of are places they can “really be themselves”, peaking at            of 20-24-year-olds 
  • Fans of            artists would be most likely            pay for a            subscription to            early access to music before            is widely released, at           
  • Almost one            four music fans would pay            a subscription that includes ‘exclusive            that no one else will            with all age groups expressing           
  • Access to            communities or exclusive access to            artist themselves (through DMs or            for example) were the least            reasons to drive a            subscription,                       and            respectively. These needs appear            be met by current social           
  • Access to            and communities does not drive            as fans will take this            a given condition to their            It is how they are            to the artist that ultimately            true ‘fandom’
  • Entertainment has            most important role for 20-24-year-olds,            the online communities they are            of to the games they            being reflective of their identities.            is a direct consequence of            saturated attention economy resulting in            taking up more of their            and, therefore, taking on a            defining role in reflecting who            are

Companies and brands mentioned in this report: Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, YouTube