The highly successful FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023TM – which shattered match attendance and television viewership records coupled with the Matildas’ history-making performance – also delivered a win for Australia’s Nation Brand.
The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023TM set a new benchmark for all-time attendance records for the tournament attracting a total audience of over 1.9 million fans and billions of television viewers globally.
Raising awareness of Australia’s Nation Brand to the world began with an event during the FIFA Women’s World CupTM Trophy Tour stop in Adelaide and then during the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™.
Jessica Hamilton, Austrade General Manager Communication and Marketing, said Australia’s Nation Brand is used to promote and tell the stories of Australia’s people, places and their products across trade, investment, international education and the visitor economy.
“During the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™, the largest women’s sporting event in the world, the Nation Brand was seen by over 1.2 million fans across the 32 matches held at Australian venues, as well as millions of viewers around the world,” said Ms Hamilton.
“Australia’s Nation Brand appeared on electronic rotating boards positioned on the halfway line at both Sydney venues – Stadium Australia and Sydney Football Stadium – and matches held in Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth.
“Austrade acts as the custodian of Australia’s Nation Brand, and we are privileged to manage the unifying brand that provides more than 440 free marketing assets – including the logo that was used on the sidelines – to help Australian businesses and government organisations promote Australia.
“More than 36,000 assets have been downloaded from the asset library, which includes the Australia logo, graphic devices, fonts, and colours; templates to support digital marketing, events and exhibitions, reports, brochures; a storytelling guide; and a suite of photography reflecting Australia by people, place and product,” said Ms Hamilton.
Nation Brand was co-created with Indigenous designers, Balarinji, and is an ‘umbrella’ brand to create a more unified presence for Australia on the world stage. The Australia logo includes a kangaroo bounding forward which reflects Australia’s optimism and is formed by a contemporary expression of three boomerangs.
Crowd records smashed
Football fans across Australia and New Zealand embraced the tournament with stadium crowds at the 2023 tournament attracting over 1.9 million fans, across the 64 matches held.
Across Australia, more than 1.2 million fans attended the 32 matches held nationally.
The largest attendances were at Stadium Australia in Sydney, attracting five capacity-crowd matches of 75,784 – which included Australia’s opening match over Republic of Ireland, and the final between Spain and England – where Australia’s Nation Brand was also on display.
The crowd of 75,784 was a record home audience for a women’s football match in Australia and the third largest in FIFA Women’s World Cup history.
The previous record was 1.35 million set at the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015 TM in Canada which hosted 52 matches and had 24 teams. The next best-attended tournament was the third edition hosted by the USA in 1999, which attracted 1,214,209 fans across 32 matches.
Record-breaking domestic audiences
Across Australia, driven by the Matildas’ history making performance, the Nation Brand was seen by almost 18.6 million Australians who watched the tournament across the screens of Seven, including 14.76 million reached on broadcast and 3.82 million on 7plus.
Australia’s Matildas’ Semi-Final against England’s Lionesses held at Sydney’s Stadium Australia became the most-watched TV program in more than two decades, with a reach of 11.15 million and an average audience of 7.2 million and most watched of their seven matches.
While the Final reached 5.54 million Australians and drew an average national total audience of 3.08 million on Seven and 7Plus.
International broadcast records smashed
Record-breaking international television audiences also saw Australia’s Nation Brand on display too, as matches hosted across Australia were televised globally.
This included Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, England, France, Germany, Nigeria, Republic of Ireland, South Korea, and Spain – all important trade, investment, and tourism markets for Australia.
According to data from FIFA, the China PR v England match had the highest reach for a single match anywhere in the world with 53.9 million Chinese viewers watching some part of their team take on England. While China’s opening match was watched by 14.58 million viewers on CCTV5.
The Final which featured Spain and England, attracted record breaking numbers and provided an additional platform to increase awareness of Australia’s Nation Brand.
In Spain, 5.6 million watched the final, and it peaked at 7.4 million viewers, with data published by Barlovento Comunicacion highlighting 56.2 per cent of the Spanish television audience was male. It was also the highest ever TV audience for a women’s football game.
Across England – now part of the recently completed Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement – the BBC announced the match attracted a peak audience of 12 million viewers on BBC One. This was higher than the men’s single Wimbledon final in July which peaked at 11.3 million.
While ITV, which also covered the World Cup final in England, hit a reported peak of 14.4 million, according to figures from ratings compiler Barb. This made it a record TV audience in the UK for a Women’s World Cup Final.
According to data from FIFA other record-breaking broadcast matches held across Australia where Nation Brand was seen were:
- China PR v England: China PR produced the highest reach for a single match anywhere in the world with 53.9 million viewers watching some part of their team take on England.
- England v Nigeria: 60.2 per cent of the viewing audience in England watched the game – the highest FIFA Women’s World Cup™ share on record. The peak viewing audience was 5.5 million.
- Colombia v Germany: Attracted 10.36 million viewing audience, the second highest TV audience on any channel in Germany this year and the biggest audience for a live sporting event in the last 18 months.
- Republic of Ireland v Australia & Republic of Ireland v Canada: Registered record-breaking audiences in each country.
Importance of Nation Brand
Ms Hamilton said Australia’s Nation Brand publicly released on 18 February 2022, was the result of research and collaboration between Australia’s Nation Brand Advisory Council, cultural organisations, Austrade and federal, state and territory governments, after Australian businesses called for a strong, consistent nation brand.
“The Nation Brand helps to show international audiences that we are as famous for our smarts as we are for being friendly and down to earth. We are a country that drives breakthroughs in science, technology, medical technology, and energy, and we offer world-class products in education, culture.”
The Economic Return of Nation Brands study notes the value of a nation’s brand correlates to factors that contribute to economic prosperity.
Australia’s Nation Brand was ranked 10th overall and in the top 10 across all key areas according to the 2022 Anholt-Ipsos Nation Brands Index (NBI) index. Rankings were informed by feedback collected from 60,000 interviewees in 20 panel countries.
The Nation Brand has also been showcased at other significant international events. In 2022, it was featured at COP27 in Egypt, Asia Fruit Logistica in Bangkok, GamesCom in Germany, and during the Prime Minister’s visit to Indonesia.
Ms Hamilton said it has been a unique and tremendous honour to have the opportunity to showcase Australia’s Nation Brand to the world commencing with our participation in the FIFA Women’s World CupTM Trophy Tour stop in Adelaide and during the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023. and during the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023.
To learn more about Australia’s Nation Brand visit, www.brandaustralia.com