Sponsorships have become a "buyers’ market" for brands, while the burgeoning youth market should be a strong focus for sports disciplines seeking to grow a fan base. That’s the top line from a new commercial trends study by research company Nielsen Sports.Its report refers specifically to five important trends that will affect the sports industry in 2019 and beyond, and makes some recommendations:• Increasing competition, fragmenting audiences, greater business sophistication and a proliferation of products are producing a variety of challenges and opportunities for rights holders and brands;• Rights holders and sponsors should be looking at better data to make sense of sponsorship. This includes understanding fan behaviour to build lasting relationships with fans and consumers;• Sports properties and media should be innovating, with rule changes in core formats, incorporating e-sports (video games and competitions), and making tech advances to foster fan engagement;• Multidimension...

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