The NFL isn’t what it used to be. Many football fans cry out that the brand has become more akin with the WWE than professional sports. Still others say the players themselves have become out of control celebrities thanks to social media. Both camps have points, but one thing is for sure: Facebook and Twitter have forever changed the way the game is played.
A recent report from THE DAILY crunched the numbers on which NFL teams reign supreme on Facebook and Twitter. The totals show us in black and white that the marriage between football and social media is indeed a happy one. 11 teams in the league have over 1 million Facebook likes while top teams on Twitter collect 100k-plus in followers. The Dallas Cowboys, at least as a brand, have been unstoppable for decades. So it’s fitting that the team is tops in Facebook likes. With 3,513,226 likes on Facebook at last glance, the Cowboys not only blow their NFL contemporaries out of the water but some celebrities and other brands, too.
When it comes to Twitter, however, it’s all about the Jets. The team tackles Twitter with 193,802 followers. While far from Gaga-like follower numbers, over 100k on Twitter for any NFL team is impressive considering many football fans choose to follow specific players instead of teams.
Twitter has notably been used by players to talk trash in order to garner headlines, but these schoolyard antics aren’t annoying true fans. Instead, football lovers are hopping on Twitter to see all of the off-field drama between rivals. On Facebook, the atmosphere among fans is more like a pep rally mixed with a lively debate. The pages for teams play host to back-and-forth from fans who have strong opinions about their favorite teams.
All of this adds up to a gold mine for the NFL. Twitter and Facebook marketing are a must-have for sports and entertainment brands. Football (which, by the way, was slow on the initial social media craze) is now changing the way other brands play the game.