The NFL is using “the best job you’ll ever have for 10 days” to greatly improve its social presence for a fanbase thirsty for content.
The NFL’s Live Content Correspondents have helped amplify the league’s social presence since the program’s launch in 2017. The first year, the LCC program took home a Shorty Award for its work.
Based on the success, for the 2018 NFL season, the program was expanded to better provide fans with a more robust content library.
“The LCC program takes our fans as close as they can get without putting on a helmet,” said David Feldman, NFL senior director of social content. “We have created a content distribution model and have creators in every market that capture content at games and events for league, clubs and players.”
The LCC program expanded from one correspondent for each of the 32 NFL teams to two, including a focus on those with DSLR experience. There were also three correspondents hired in London, to better capture and assist teams in the league’s games in the United Kingdom.
Many of the first-year LCCs rolled over into the second year and helped recommend new hires, said Samantha Strejeck, NFL coordinator of social media operations and LCC. She said a major request from the league’s teams was a need for added video support.
During the 2018 season, LCCs captured nearly 2,700 pieces of content on Instagram and Twitter, which resulted in 96.9 million video views and 37.2 million engagements through league, club and player accounts. The LCC content was restrained to social media streams, however, but also included 68 videos featured on NFL Network’s GameDay Morning and Checkdown’s Twitter shows.
The LCC workforce is made up of a collection of professionals in all the NFL markets, many skilled in photo while others specialize in DSLR video and Snapchat or Instagram stories. The makeup of the LCC team was partially dependent on what the local teams needed for support on their digital content teams.
“We originally launched primarily as a way to help the clubs,” Feldman said. “They each have different resources when they’re on the road and this was a way to have extra creators to capture real-time photo and video, and it’s grown in tandem working with the clubs.”
Now, the NFL will continue to grow the LCC program to expand the leverage of capturing as much content as possible, Strejeck said. The expanded LCC teams grew club and player posts 300 percent, while engagement jumped 400 percent.
“Having two content creators supercharged our efforts,” she said. “Having two meant we could capture every big moment, pregame, in-game and postgame.”
A key factor in the LCC program and helping get the content out fast was an upgraded WiFi system in each stadium, said Feldman. The NFL also has a partnership with Samsung, providing each LCC with a phone.
The content also expanded beyond game day, said Russell Simon, NFL coordinator of social media operations and LCC.
“We see the LCC program as the way to celebrate football everywhere, and this is the mechanism we can capture great moments at scale at game day and beyond,” Simon said. “LCCs can now capture content at any moment all year round. It’s everything from community events to the Super Bowl to workouts.”
The use of LCCs off the field works into a broader movement by the NFL’s digital efforts to better capture player lives and help the content permeate throughout the football ecosystem as a whole.
“It’s investing in helping players improve their social footprints and it’s about showing players’ helmets off and getting to know them off the field,” Feldman said. “The content shows the personality-driven aspects of their lives. It’s not just athletes with what they bring on the field. The players are the best influencers and evangelizers of the league.”