If you’ve ever watched an NFL game with an impassioned fan, you know they just can’t shut up even for a minute. Consequently, Twitter and its 140 character limit is a perfect fit for many. Unlike proper football (soccer), professional American football provides a perfect amount of time between plays to allow viewers to send a tweet without missing much of the action.
Twitter to post NFL highlights
In a statement from both Twitter and the NFL today, the two groups have agreed to partner up to increase the reach of the NFL. The NFL will post video highlights throughout game days and will share the advertising revenue with Twitter.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) will be one of the sponsors for clips of game highlights featured on Twitter, said Hans Schroeder, the NFL’s senior vice president of media strategy and development. The videos will range from replays to expert advice on fantasy football, he said.
Twitter looking for sales growth
This is a big deal for Twitter, which is looking to reach $1 billion in sales for the first time in 2014 and confidentially filed for an initial public offering earlier this month. The deal with the NFL follows a similar arrangement. Twitter reached with the NBA earlier this year to feature video highlights of ongoing games.
“This is a big splash for us in the social-media space,” Schroeder said yesterday in an interview. “We know our fans want to do more things while watching games.”
Schroeder and Will Stickney, a spokesman for San Francisco-based Twitter, declined to discuss specific terms of the deal when contacted by Bloomberg earlier today.
Spike in twitter’s traiffc
The deal shows that Twitter is well aware of spikes in traffic that occur based on viewers “tweeting while watching.” These spikes are more prevalent during sporting events than episodes of HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” or even “Breaking Bad.” Twitter presently has deals with Viacom for stand-up clips, weather forecasts with the Weather Channel and college basketball highlights with Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting unit.
It’s also believed that Twitter and CBS are finalizing a deal to sell promotions in posts and video clips.
The NFL has more than 5 million followers on its official Twitter account, to say nothing of the hundreds of players who use Twitter on a regular basis to interact with fans and share photos that only the players could take. While this may irk coaches, I wouldn’t want to be the person who tells defensive demon J.J. Watt to put his phone away while he’s waiting to take the field.