In 2009, mixed martial arts was the only sport in North America to grow in fan avidity according to an ESPN sports poll.
According to MMAPayout.com, pay-per-view buys during 2010 for the UFC did an estimated 8,970,000 buys for its 15 shows during the year, for an average of 598,000 buys per show, which was up from any past year's buy rates (www.mmapayout.com, February 15, 2011).
From a social media perspective, the UFC continues to rise in its popularity on both Facebook and Twitter. According to Simon Dumenco on December 10, 2010, the UFC is at No. 10 for the trendiest topics tweeted, ahead of the NFL and the other major North American sports leagues.
(http://mmapayout.com/2010/12/ufc-makes-weekly-top-twitter-trends-list, February 15, 2011)
Globally affluent sponsorships are flocking to the UFC and other MMA promotions including Budweiser which adds a level of credibility to the sport and directs more attention to ultimate fighting.
Additionally, the sport has seen a rise in personalities which enables the fans to associate themselves with their favorite fighters. Brock Lesnar, Anderson Silva and Georges St-Pierre are becoming household names and corporations are taking notice.
Let me flash forward to 2011.
Ultimate fighting as a sport continues to grow and flourish globally. With the UFC leading the charge, Strikeforce and Bellator Fighting Championships are packing arenas worldwide, selling millions of dollars in merchandise globally and elevating the brand that is ultimate fighting to an unforeseen height.
Leading the charge in popularity are Brock Lesnar and the 10 figures that will make MMA mainstream in 2011.
I look forward to your comments.
"Like" me on Facebook
Follow me on Twitter @magnus06