Inside The NFL's First-Of-Its-Kind Deal With Snapchat

By: Zach Seybert, @zlseybert

The NFL has become the first pro league to reach a deal with Snapchat. Photo via fortune.com.

The NFL has become the first pro league to reach a deal with Snapchat. Photo via fortune.com.

Recently, Snapchat has been in the news for a variety of reasons, including Instagram’s adoption of a “story” feature awkwardly similar to the whole Snapchat platform, but in other news, Snapchat has partnered with the NFL to create a channel on the platform’s “Discover” page.

By doing so, the NFL will become the first professional league to announce an official, multi-year deal with the mobile messaging application used to share photos, videos, text and drawings. According to the official announcement from the NFL, Snapchat Discover and NFL media will produce official content and “Live Stories” for all 256 regular season games and the Super Bowl.

This comes after Snapchat’s creation of “Live Stories” (collections of snaps from a specific event) for close to 50 NFL games last year, which had over 70 million people watching. To compare this number, there were 199 million TV viewers tuned into NFL games, according to Nielsen. The engagement numbers from Snapchat alone are expected to jump significantly given there will be almost five times as many games for Live Stories in addition to the Discover channel.

The platform has certainly taken over the social scene in the past few years and is looking to bring in $300 million in revenue this year, which is much more than the $50 million the company projected for 2015 revenue. With the creation of new features on the app, there has also been some experimenting with ads which can sometimes be overlooked by users given their almost seamless integration. As part of their agreement, Snapchat and the NFL will sell ads for each Live Story and the Discover channel, the revenue for which will be split.

Examples of how Snapchat was used during the 2015 season. All 256 regular season games will have customized Geofilters. Photo via theverge.com.

Examples of how Snapchat was used during the 2015 season. All 256 regular season games will have customized Geofilters. Photo via theverge.com.

A popular feature for users has been the Geofilters customized for different locations around the globe, which can be applied to photos and videos when a user is in that location. With this partnership, NFL fans will be able to use customized Geofilters for each of the league’s 32 teams, which allow users to access team-specific content when they are near NFL stadiums and practice facilities.

“We’re excited to expand our partnership with Snapchat, delivering compelling NFL content to a platform where millions of our fans around the world interact on a daily basis,” said Blake Stuchin, Director of Digital Media Business Development for the NFL.

“The launch of the NFL on Discover will provide a key touch point to follow storylines throughout the week, and the expansion of Live Stories will provide fans with a unique perspective of the excitement in and around our stadiums at every game all season-long.” For a joint press release by the two companies, click here.

The NFL’s expansion of its partnership with Snapchat continues the league’s trend of venturing into social media. Earlier this year, the NFL and Twitter agreed to a deal allowing the platform to broadcast the league’s Thursday night football games online. This was a move that surprised those in the sports and media industries, with Twitter outbidding Amazon, Yahoo and Facebook.

With this partnership and Snapchat’s continual evolution as a go-to social media platform, football Sundays (Mondays and Thursdays) have become even more accessible to fans worldwide.

How Will the 2016 Rio Olympic Games be Remembered?

The Quick Ascension of Under Armour; How it's Happened and What it Means