Seton Hall

Sports fans are becoming a major market for cryptocurrency and NFTs, according to a new survey conducted by Seton Hall University.

In a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted last month, just 24 percent of all respondents said that someone in their household has purchased cryptocurrency and/or non-fungible tokens. That number, however, rises considerably when the sample is limited to sports fans—with the difference even more pronounced for those who consider themselves “avid fans.”

More than a third (34 percent) of all sports fans said that someone in their household has purchased crypto or NFTs, and for avid fans, the figure increases to 57 percent.

The study also found that men (37 percent) were more likely than women (13 percent) to dabble in crypto or NFTs. Respondents who were 55 or older were the least enthusiastic demographic, with only seven percent saying they had made such a purchase. Almost three out of ten (29 percent) of those ages 35 to 54 said they were crypto/NFT purchasers, and for respondents between 18 and 34, interest rises to 42 percent.

The poll also asked sports fans what, beyond its value as a collectible, makes an NFT appealing to them—one top perk: significant discounts at team stores for official merchandise. About two-thirds (66 percent) of avid fans said they would be interested in those discounts, while only 38 percent of casual fans said the same.

Ticket upgrades (at no extra cost) were also a popular extra, with 66 percent of avid fans and 52 percent of casual fans saying that would interest them.

Other pluses include the ability to convert a game-day ticket into a digital collectible card and a chance to walk on the playing field or court after a game.

“If managed effectively, NFTs could become a major source of revenue as well as a new avenue of fan connection,” said Seton Hall marketing professor and poll methodologist Daniel Ladik. “Interactive assets like NFTs can drive a sense of holder equity and belonging—key attributes for brand success.”

The Seton Hall Sports Poll surveyed 1,514 adults across the country between May 5 and 9.