If it seems as if a day doesn’t go by without news of a new football livestream offering, you’re right. With media entities such as Twitter and Facebook now over a decade old, the millennial generation has become accustomed to watching football online, which means increased revenue opportunities for the NFL and more smiles on owner’s faces.
With that in mind, here are some items of interest from NFL Draft Bible’s Ric Serritella, especially to those people seeking to find a niche in the game.
Six-second ads: During the offseason, the NFL announced its intention to eliminate the ‘double-up’ commercial breaks. If you’re not familiar with that term, it’s when broadcast networks decide to go to commercial break following a touchdown, then again following the kickoff. These ‘double ups’ have helped the league generate about $3.5 billion for the five networks carrying their broadcasts (CBS, Fox, ESPN, NBC and NFL Network). On the other hand, they’ve irritated fans and made for longer games at a time when attention spans are getting shorter.
With the growing influence of social media, the average user’s attention span has drastically decreased. According to a recent Microsoft study, the average attention span is now eight seconds, down from 12 in 2000, which would make it shorter than a goldfish.
So what’s the answer? Six-second ads. Fox is the first to announce this offering. Ads will debut on America’s Game of the Week and be deployed in a variety of forms, including a shorter commercial load or in-game execution, designed to “most seamlessly integrate with each type of sport.”
C-USA goes with Flo: Whether you’re away from home, out of market or on the go, the recent increase of online livestream channels has made it easier to keep up with every college football team. The latest to enter the arena is FloSports, which has signed an agreement to broadcast Conference USA games.
The deal includes exclusive live and on-demand coverage of three regular-season games featuring Charlotte, Western Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky, Louisiana Tech and Rice. Though lacking the national exposure of the Power Five conferences, most of which own their own network, Conference USA is leading the charge as an early adaptor to Over-The-Top (OTT) content. They also struck a deal with Stadium, in addition to beIN SPORTS, which makes its 2017 Conference USA debut Saturday with FIU’s home opener against Alcorn State, the first of 10 Saturday evening games on the network.
Though NFL broadcast networks generated a bundle in ad sales, the biggest money-maker for NFL owners comes from TV deals. Last year, the league earned $7.8 billion in TV broadcast rights. That means each NFL team earned $244 million from broadcast deals before the season began.
NFL expands social networking: As the league continues to turn toward livestream online network deals, a recent shareholder report by Twitter signals that an increasing NFL presence on social media is arriving faster than we ever imagined. According to the report, last year’s Thursday Night Football (TNF) livestream package drew an average of 3.5 million unique viewers per game, with 55 percent under the age of 25, an indication of the strong demographic metrics most advertisers covet.
The success was so great that Twitter lost out on the TNF package to Amazon this year, which paid $50 million for the rights to the package, five times more than what Twitter paid the year before. However, Twitter managed to keep skin in the game by agreeing to a multi-year deal with the league to provide uniquely packaged official NFL video.