Using Esri Data to Find the Next Olympians – Part 1

The 2012 Olympic Games are currently underway in London.  The estimated 10,500 athletes will be competing in 302 events in 26 sports.  This is a two-part series looking at various sports in the London Olympic Games and athletes from the U.S. participating in them.

Archery

In the U.S., just about 2% of the population participates in archery.  In the Olympics, South Korea has typically dominated the sport, but the U.S. has made a good showing as well. 

Where are people in the U.S. who most likely participate in archery?  The ZIP Code with the highest index is 29424, which is located in Charleston, SC.  That area has an index for archery of 512.  This means that people who live there are 412 percent more likely than the average American to participate in archery.  Other areas with high indices for archery are areas around the Midwest as well in states like Idaho, Oregon and Indiana. 

What type of person is typically most likely to participate in archery?  What type is least likely?  We can use Tapestry Segmentation to classify consumers.  The segments that have an index of 200 or higher for archery participation, meaning they are at least 100 percent more likely than the average American to participate in archery, are Dorms to Diplomas, Rustbelt Traditions, and Military ProximityRustbelt Traditions are the backbone of older industrial cities in the Great Lakes border states.  Many residents live in modest, single-family homes built before 1960.  Many of these residents have lived, worked, shopped, and played in the same neighborhood their entire lives.

Not everyone is into archery.  In fact, there are several Tapestry segments that have an index of 50 or below for participating in archery.  This means they are 50 percent as likely (or less) than the average American to participate in archery.  These segments are: City Dimensions, City Lights, City Strivers, Connoisseurs, High Rise Renters, Industrious Urban Fringe, International Marketplace, Modest Income Homes, NeWest Residents, Pleasant-Ville, Urban Chic, Urban Melting Pot, Urban Rows, and Wealthy Seaboard Suburbs.  These segments are from a variety of LifeMode and Urbanization groups.  One common theme among LifeMode groups is that many of these segments are from Global Roots, a very diverse LifeMode group.  75% of Global Roots neighborhoods have an index of 50 or less for participating in archery.

Horseback Riding/Equestrian

In the U.S., 2.3% of the population participates in horseback riding.  Many of those people live in the western part of the United States.  People most likely to participate in horseback riding live in the plain states.  There are pockets in the northeast of people who also like to go horseback riding.

One of the ZIP Codes with the highest index of likely horseback riders is 57430, which is Britton, South Dakota.  The index here is 267 meaning people living in this ZIP Code are 167 percent more likely than the average American to go horseback riding.

What type of people are the most likely to go horseback riding?  There are three Tapestry segments where the index for the likelihood to go horseback riding is 200 or higher: College Towns, Prairie Living, and Rural Resort Dwellers. Prairie Living residents, for example, typically live in single, family-owned farms in the Midwest.  They have a median age of 42.9 years and 9 out of 10 residents are white.

Of course, not everyone goes horseback riding.  There are several Tapestry segments with a Market Potential Index of 50 or less.  That means they are at least 50% less likely to go horseback riding than the average American.  These segments are:  High Rise Renters, Industrious Urban Fringe, Inner City Tenants, International Marketplace, Las Casa, and NeWest Residents.   

The dominant Lifemode group among these Tapestry segments is Global Roots.  LifeMode groups are characterized by lifestyle and lifestage and share an experience such as being born in the same time period or a trait such as affluence. 79% of all Global Roots neighborhoods have an index of 50 or less for horseback riding.  These neighborhoods are very diverse.  Residents are young, earn modest incomes, and tend to rent in multiunit buildings.

Swimming

About 14.8% of adults in the U.S. participate in swimming.  The areas with a higher likelihood of swimming are in the west, eastern seaboard, and Hawaii.  Two of the ZIP Codes with the highest Market Potential Indexes are 10069 and 10282 – both in New York City.  Their index is 150 meaning residents of those areas are 50 percent more likely than the average American to participate in swimming.

The Tapestry segment most likely to participate in swimming is Laptops and Lattes.  The Market Potential Index for these segments is 150.  Residents of Laptops and Lattes neighborhoods enjoy single life in the big city. Most households are singles who live alone or with a roommate.   They are very affluent; the median household income is $84,612.

Not everyone is a swimmer.  There are several segments that have a Market Potential Index of 50 or less.  These are:  City Commons, City Strivers, Family Foundations, High Rise Renters, Las Casas, Metro City Edge, Modest Income Homes, and NeWest Residents.  Many of these segments are part of the Principal Urban Centers II Urbanization group.  Urbanization Groups are based on geographic and physical features such as population density, size of city, location in or outside a metropolitan area, and whether it is part of the economic and social center of a metropolitan area.  Principal Urban Centers II represents the aspiring populations of the country’s largest cities. This is the youngest and most diverse Urbanization group.  The median age is 30.1. 

Target Shooting

Shooting has been part of almost every modern Olympics.  There are 15 shooting events in the 2012 London Olympics.  Overall, the U.S. has won the most Olympic medals in the sport.  In the U.S., about 2.9% of adults participate in target shooting.  The people most likely to participate in the sport live in the extreme northeast and northwest parts of the U.S.

The Tapestry segment most likely to participate in target shooting is Rural Resort.  94% of neighborhoods where this segment dominates have a Market Potential Index of 200 or more for target shooting.  This means that residents in these neighborhoods are at least 100% more likely than the average American to participate in target shooting.  These neighborhoods are found in pastoral settings in rural nonfarm areas throughout the United States. The median age is 49.4 years; more than half are aged 55 and older. Most residents are white in these low-diversity neighborhoods.

Some Tapestry segments have residents who are much less likely to participate in target shooting.  The neighborhoods dominated by the segments City Lights, City Strivers, Metro City Edge, Modest Income homes, Trendsetters, and Urban Rows have a Market Potential Index of 50 or less for target shooting.  This means that residents of these neighborhoods are ½ as likely (or less) to participate in target shooting as the average American.  Many of these segments are part of the LifeMode group Metropolis.  Residents of Metropolis live and work in America’s cities.  They live in older, single-family homes or row houses built in the 1940s or earlier. Many rely on public transportation and commute to service-related jobs.

Weightlifting

Over 9% of U.S. adults participate in weightlifting.  This is not quite the weightlifting of the Olympics though.  Olympians are lifting 300 pounds or more. 

The people that are most likely to participate in weightlifting live along the eastern seaboard and in the western part of the U.S.  ZIP Code 06269 has one of the highest indexes for likelihood to participate in weightlifting, which is Storrs Mansfield, CT, the location of University of Connecticut.  The index here is 217 meaning a resident in 06269 is 117% more likely than the average American to participate in weightlifting.

The Tapestry segments with residents most likely to participate in weightlifting are Dorms to Diplomas and Metro Renters.  Neighborhoods where these segments are dominant have an Market Potential Index of 200 or higher.  Residents of these segments are very young and likely have a lot of time to go to the gym.

Not everyone is into weightlifting.  Residents of neighborhoods where City Dimensions, City Commons, Modest Income Homes, NeWest Residents, Prairie Living, Rooted Rural, Rural Bypasses, and Southern Satellites are dominant have a Market Potential Index of 50 or less.  This means a resident in these segments are ½ as likely (or less) to participate in weightlifting. 

Why Does This Matter?

Understanding the activities of consumers can help businesses target potential customers.  Consumers who like swimming – or dislike swimming – may be interested in a certain product or service or movie.  This information, especially at the local level, can aid in advertising or determining where to open a new store that targets a particular type of customer.

More information about Esri’s Market Potential data can be found here.  You can learn more about the different segments contained in Esri Tapestry Segmentation here.

This article was written by Pam Allison.  Pam is a digital media and marketing strategist who focuses on helping companies expand their marketing reach.

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