The FIFA Women’s World Cup has been hailed as a “game-changing’ event, reaching an amazing 18.6 million Australians across the tournament on the screens of Seven.
After Sunday night’s tense final at Stadium Australia, the final numbers have landed, setting all sorts of TV records and exceeding the expectations of many an expert across the country.
The overwhelming success has even been applauded by media moguls from rival networks, who have heaped praised on Seven for the outstanding coverage.
“It must be said, congratulations to Channel 7,” SEN owner Craig Hutchison – who also appears on Nine – said on his podcast prior to the final.
“Very hard to find an event that drives scalable television like this anymore in modern times, so it’s a huge coup and that must be conceded.
“(Seven) absolutely crushed it …. it has been unbelievable effort from Seven.”
Fans could not get enough of the action on Seven. Credit: Getty Images
Seven live and free coverage delivered “the biggest viewing audiences across all screens since the OzTAM audience measurement system started in 2001”.
“Almost 18.6 million Australians watched the tournament across the screens of Seven, including 14.76 million reached on broadcast and 3.82 million on 7plus,” Seven said in a statement.
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And it wasn’t just the Matildas driving the numbers with the final between Spain and England reaching 5.54 million Australians on the screens of Seven.
“The final drew an average national total audience of 3.08 million on Seven and 7plus, including 2.7 million viewers on Seven (2 million in the capital cities) and another 373,000 viewers on 7plus,” Seven said.
On Sunday, the final was the No.1 broadcast program across the country and in the capital cities in all people, ages 25 to 54s and 16 to 39s.
7plus also dominated broadcast video on-demand viewing on Sunday, with a 59.2 per cent share and 66.3 per cent in live streaming.
“The game peaked at 3.21 million viewers on broadcast and dominated its broadcast timeslot, scoring a 66.1 per cent commercial audience share in total people, 70.5 per cent in 25 to 54s and 78.4 per cent in 16 to 39s,” Seven said.
The Matildas’ semi-final against England on August 16 was the most-watched TV program in more than two decades, with an average audience of 7.2 million and a reach of 11.15 million.
It was also the most streamed event ever in Australia, with 957,000 viewers on 7plus.
The FIFA Women’s World Cup delivered massive ratings for Seven. Credit: Seven
More than 547 million minutes of the Women’s World Cup content has been watched on 7plus to date.
Seven Melbourne managing director and head of network sport, Lewis Martin, said the passion for the sport was very clear.
“Seven’s broadcast of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in partnership with Optus Sport showcased the growing passion for women’s football and the undeniable fact that sport brings Australians together,” he said.
“Seven’s unparalleled live and free coverage of the event, underpinned by our team of passionate, expert commentators, reaffirms our ongoing commitment to celebrate and grow both men’s and women’s sports across all codes. From the AFLW and the WBBL to women’s international cricket and more, Seven has a strong legacy of bringing the best in sports to Australians that inspires the next generation.
“This World Cup has been like no other and has set a new benchmark for future tournaments. The Matildas have been nothing short of spectacular and we’re honoured to have shared their remarkable journey,” he said.
Seven West Media chief revenue officer, Kurt Burnette, said: “The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 firmly cemented itself as the biggest broadcast and digital viewing event in Australian history.
“We knew it would be a cultural game-changer and it’s been just that – categorically shaping culture and changing behaviours. Audience numbers on Seven and 7plus, in partnership with Optus, surpassed our expectations to deliver incredible results for our brand partners, while creating a halo effect across the rest of our schedule like we’ve never seen before,” he said.
“No other medium other can create the same mass cultural impact as TV and we’re proud that Seven’s coverage united Australia, created a shared sense of pride across the nation and produced lasting memories that will inspire a new generation.”