5 Things Advertisers Should Know About Twitter’s NFL Livestreaming Deal

Brands seem to already approve

Twitter announced a deal with the NFL today to livestream 10 of the league's 16 Thursday Night Football games next season. The league chose Twitter over Amazon and Verizon for the digital rights to the games. A source familiar with the agreement said it was finalized this week. 

The source also disclosed a few ramifications for advertisers of the Twitter-NFL agreement, and Adweek spoke with industry players to get their take. Here are the five most important things we learned:

1. More Twitter inventory  

People who watch Thursday Night Football on Twitter will see roughly 20 video ads that television viewers will not see, the source said. Considering that about 70 spots air during a typical NFL broadcast, Twitter has control over nearly 30 percent of the ads appearing in its livestream.

2. Premium purchase

The social media company will sell the ads on a cost-per-thousand (CPM) basis at what would represent a premium cost to marketers accustomed to Twitter pricing, according to the source.

3. Regional ads

The ads will sometimes be sold on a country-by-country basis, per the source. So in theory, NFL fans in the U.K. could see a spot from grocer Tesco while Americans see an ad for Walmart. 

4. Brand marketers like it 

Re/code reported that Twitter paid less than $10 million for the 10 games.

If Lou Paskalis, svp, enterprise media executive at Bank of America, is any measure, brands are going to reward Twitter for its investment. Bank of America has been a steady advertiser via the preroll-based Twitter Amplify program, and Paskalis plans to buy.

"The NFL got it right," Paskalis said. "Twitter gives us a real path to connect around relevant cultural moments in a way that other advertisements do not."

Kyle Bunch, head of social at agency R/GA, added, "The prospect of the NFL on Twitter is exciting because it has the potential to make brand communications immediately actionable—be it a share, a comment, or even a purchase, all without leaving the video and conversation stream—for one of the largest, live viewing audiences worldwide."

5. Social-sports marriage

Lastly, the deal with the NFL could be just the beginning for Twitter when it comes to its sports-related aims. In fact, if the NFL experience proves successful, folks should probably expect similar deals with the likes of Major League Baseball, the NBA, the NHL and NCAA sports in the years to come. 

Brandfire CEO Adam Padilla suggested that the larger confluence of live sports, social media and advertising is just getting started.

"Next up: NBC presents the Olympics on Snapchat," Padilla said. "Imagine those filters."

Recommended articles