F1 sees TV and social media growth under Liberty Media

Under Liberty Media, Formula 1 was one of the fastest growing sports brands over the course of last year through social media growth and increased TV viewing figures.

2017 was Liberty Media's first year at the helm of F1 after taking over the commercial rights of the sport in late 2016 for the sum of US$4.4 billion, and the company has successfully attracted new audiences as it aimed to do following its takeover. 

By the end of 2017, Formula 1 experienced an increase in TV viewing figures of 6.2 per cent while 11.9 million followers across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube marked a growth of 54.9 per cent when compared to 2016's social media following totals.

The biggest rise in TV viewing came in Italy, which showed growth of 19.1 per cent followed by Brazil, 13.4 per cent. Across the 20 races of the 2017 season, viewing figures remained at 603 million cumulative of both live and non-live broadcasts.

During the reign of Bernie Ecclestone, very little attention was paid to social media, but under Liberty, online content has been a key area for pursuit with content published to YouTube and other social platforms almost daily, and Sean Bratches, F1's commercial managing director, highlighted the sport's growth as encouraging.

“Central to our efforts last season was to improve the fan experience across our platforms and it is encouraging to see the engagement that fans around the world have with Formula One media," he said.

Liberty Media also reported higher race attendance figures for the 2017 season, with an 8 per cent rise to more than 4 million.