Formula E

How do you maximise audience engagement?

At a glance

Formula E is the world motorsport championship for single-seater electric vehicles and holds FIA world championship status. But Formula E is more than just a racing series, it’s a battle for the future. The radical, electric-powered cars are paving the way for the road cars of tomorrow, with the series serving as a competitive platform to showcase the latest in electric technology. Formula E wants to turbo-boost its growing global popularity through increased fandom and viewership, positioning itself as not just an engaging sport, but a leader in sustainable mobility.

Our partnership with Formula E over the past few years has been dedicated to driving growth through measuring, understanding, and ultimately enhancing viewing experience with the Formula E broadcast offering across key markets.

The full story

Formula E’s footprint spans across 40 broadcast partners in over 192 broadcast and digital territories, covering 25 languages. For each race, the organisation streams five bespoke feeds along with additional programming and live studio commentary. With ambitions to expand its audience and global reach even further, Formula E recognised that the average viewer duration had room to grow.

The electric racing giant needed an approach that would enable them to accurately measure and enhance their broadcast content. However, when it comes to video content research, it’s often difficult to measure true audience engagement and experience, as it relies on post-rationalism, and is often conducted outside the natural context where viewers consume content the most – in their homes.

To overcome these challenges, we designed an innovative multi-faceted 360 approach, combining quantitative research, in-home biometrics analysis (using technology provided by Mediaprobe), and qualitative research to capture respondents’ explicit and implicit engagement with the race coverage. This three-pronged approach provides a holistic view of the Formula E broadcast and content offering, enabling us to advise Formula E on how best to optimise their broadcast for maximum engagement and viewership.

The solution

Kicking off with online quantitative surveys provided robust numerical insight into viewer engagement with Formula E broadcasts and the motorsport landscape. We captured attitudes towards the brand, sporting rules, and features, as well as fans’ content consumption habits to inform Formula E about its strengths, unique selling points, and challenges. Leveraging our national representative omnibus service, we were also able to provide lightning-fast feedback on Formula E’s talent mix.

Delving deeper, we used an innovative biometric solution to measure fans’ emotional responses to the race coverage from the comfort of their homes. Through galvanic skin response (GSR), we were able to calculate engagement by monitoring the fluctuating levels of sweat secretion as panellists watched and emotionally engaged with the coverage. Capturing responses passively, unobtrusively, and in-the-moment provided insights that identified which elements of the broadcast content were engaging, which were not, and how to optimise the viewing experience.

To tie everything together, we ran open and constructive group discussions on the broadcast material to corroborate findings from the biometrics study, identify and test optimisations, and uncover any missing insights. The qualitative research added vital context as to why certain elements of the broadcast were or weren’t engaging and more importantly, how to improve the viewer experience on a market-by-market basis.

With our finger on the pulse of fan viewing optimisation, we have been able to strategically advise Formula E on areas for improvements, pinpoint the specific production elements to rev up and down, all with the goal of ultimately elevating the overall appeal of the sport for both existing and future fans. 

Racing towards an electric future

The programme has been revolutionary for Formula E. The insights are actively driving changes that are significantly improving production and enhancing global audience engagement season after season. Ushering in a new era of on-screen excitement, our insights have informed the introduction of a pre-race soundtrack, significantly improved graphics, a more engaging podium ceremony, and so much more – immersing fans like never before.

Brace for impact

Our work has garnered the attention, interest, and active engagement of the global broadcast team at Formula E, who trust and powerfully implement our strategic recommendations. This has resulted in an immediate impact on TV production, with a significant uplift observed across many key performance viewing measures season on season, including average viewing duration, cumulative audience, and viewing hours.

Winner: Competition, Event or Tournament of the Year, Sports Technology Awards 2023

Sandy McDougall
Senior TV & Digital Insights Manager, Formula E

“Working with Yonder has been seamless. The team deliver work that allows us to make real change. They really understand our business, how it works and what matters to our audiences. The Yonder team bring energy and ignite a passion for customer driven transformation which quickly delivers results.”

Matt Roberts
Business Intelligence DirectoR, Formula E

“The work with Yonder has allowed our Formula E broadcast to reach new heights, resulting in an enhanced tv offering, more viewers and more fans. The work Yonder produced has quickly had a real impact in our business and enabled us to connect with our audience on a much deeper level”





What we did

Customer understanding