5 Social Media Takeaways from the NFL Wildcard

The NFL post-season is in full gear, which often means social media content is stepped up a notch. The social media coverage from NFL teams during the Wildcard Weekend was on point. From prepared graphics to stellar GIFS, the games were fun to follow on social. Below are five takeaways/highlights from the weekend:


1. Empower others to build excitement.

The Seahawks, Vikings and Redskins did a great job enlisting others to help spread excitement and support. Each team took a different angle, from sponsors to home state teams. All too often in sports we rely on our own accounts to generate excitement. We’re fortunate to work in an industry where our audiences are passionate. Still, enlisting others can pull in a new audience, reinforce your message and make the CTA stronger.

One thing I love about these “influencers” graphics is they have a similar nice and feel. A cohesive design is a strong way to tie everything together:



2. Prepare for losses.

Losses are never an easy thing in sports, especially when it’s a really heartbreaking one. Social media managers have to plan for both the wins and losses though. If the players can face a press conference after a loss, us on the Internet can face a few angry fans after we post the final score.

The Vikings did a great job handling their loss. They posted the final score with language that tapped into the sentiment of the game. They followed up by thanking fans (which you can never go wrong with):


Handling both the wins and losses is part of the job. Be thoughtful in your approach.


3- A little access can go a long way.

When you work in sports, it’s easy to take for granted to the personal and emotional moments you have access to. Moments that are full of emotion are content gold. Give fans a little access inside the team’s journey—whether it’s locker room setup or post-game access. As the content shows below, you don’t have to be intrusive with your access. One shot from the camera and you’re good to go.



4- Prompt your fans.

Calls-to-engagements are one of the things that get written off because to us they feel forced, phony, cheesy, etc. And while you don’t want to always resort to gimmicks, sometimes your fans need a little nudge. Calls-to-engagement should be a tool in your toolbox.

If you don’t want to use obvious prompts though, there is good news. They can be subtle! The Seattle Seahawks gave a great example of what this look likes:

This tweet promoted their fans to reply “Hawks”. And whether or not this prompt was intentional, it’s a great example of thinking creatively about what might encourage your fans to action.

If you aren’t thinking about ways to get your community engaged, then start strategizing around it. Calls-to-engagement are a powerful rallying cry. They can catapult a great piece of content even further, draw new fans in and simply help to build a stronger community. They should absolutely used.


5- Small tweaks can pull your content together.

I’m a big believer in tying your content together through a defined look and feel. The Chiefs and Vikings did a good job with this. The Chiefs photos all had consistent editing with a small @Chiefs in the corner; the Vikings used a small overlay that promoted “forge ahead”.


While you don’t want all your photos and content to be too design heavy, you can make small tweaks (from the way you edit photos to simple overlays) to pull your content together.


BONUS: Packers GIF

This isn’t a takeaway, but it’s an awesome piece of content worth sharing:




What stood out to you from NFL teams during the Wildcard Weekend? Share your thoughts below!


Thanks for reading.

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