Uncovering the profile of early bird moviegoers in the US
December 4th, 2023, Kineree Shah

Uncovering the profile of early bird moviegoers in the US

Watching movies is one of America’s favorite activities – more than a third of them (35%) say that it’s an activity they enjoy doing in their free time – behind only restaurants (46%) and parks (37%) in the list of 20+ activities we asked about. So great is the love for movies that some are trying to watch them before they even officially release. YouGov Profiles reveals that this trend is more than just a passing fancy, with 1 in 10 Americans engaging in early screenings. But what sets these consumers apart?

This target audience is predominantly younger. Millennials lead the pack, making up half of this group (54%), notably higher than their representation in the national population (32%). Gen Z, the youngest cohort, also punches above their weight, representing 17% of this group compared to just 10% nationally. In contrast, Gen X, while making up 21% of the advance screening audience, are underrepresented compared to their 27% share in the broader population. Baby Boomers show the most significant disparity; they account for only 7% of early moviegoers, which is considerably lower than their 28% presence nationally. Men are more inclined towards these advance screenings (comprising 62% of this audience) in contrast to women (38%).

In terms of income, among those purchasing advance movie screening tickets, two in five are from middle-income households (earning between 75% and 200% of the median), slightly over-representing their share in the overall US population (35%). Similarly, lower-income individuals (earning less than 75% of the median) make up another 40% of this group, in contrast to their 44% presence nationally. High-income earners (more than 200% of the median), though less prevalent at 12%, still exceed their national representation of 8%.

Our data also sheds light on their media consumption habits, particularly their preference for podcasts. Half of these moviegoers listen to podcasts at least once a week (52%), sharply higher than the share among the overall US audience (28%).

Looking into attitude towards podcast ads among advance screening enthusiasts, more than a third find ads intrusive but listen anyway (36%), a higher tolerance than one-fifth of general population (21%). A quarter opt to skip these ads (26%), a lower figure compared to one-third of all listeners (32%). One in five advance screening enthusiasts say they don't find the ads intrusive or that they find them interesting (19%), slightly higher than the general population (15%).

This group of early moviegoers is a distinct category with specific media consumption patterns. Understanding their preferences and behaviors offers valuable insights for marketers and content creators looking to target an engaged, media-savvy audience.

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YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. Profiles data for the US is nationally representative and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about Profiles