NFL Kickoff Weekend By The Social Numbers


This post is part of a multi-part series with our partner Sysomos, exploring how social media impacts our world.

NFL KickoffSports fans around North America rejoiced over the past weekend as NFL football kicked off it’s 2014/15 season.

Some people look forward to Christmas, birthdays or vacations, but for football fans, the start of the season is the greatest time of year. With social media being such a big part of events these days, especially those that are broadcast for large audiences to watch at the same time, it’s no surprise that the social world exploded with excitement over the weekend.

We thought that it would be fun to take a broad look at how social media was used to talk about football this past weekend using MAP, our social media monitoring and analytics software.

We did a search for people talking about the “NFL” or “football” during kickoff weekend, which ran from September 4 through 8. What we found was that there was over 5.4 million mentions made across social channels. Over those five days we found 47,206 blog posts, 127,337 online news articles, 205,528 forum postings and 5,062,054 tweets.

Sysomos MAP - Activity Summary

But those weren’t the only online arenas people were talking NFL and football. When we investigated videos, including YouTube, Vimeo and a host of other video networks, we found that an incredible 40,996 videos had been uploaded that mentioned our key words in their title or descriptions.

Sysomos MAP - Video Activity

Over on Tumblr, it was no different. Over the 5 days that we looked at we found that Tumblrites (is that what we call them? If not, can we start?) had made 4,076,921 posts on the site that mentioned the NFL or football.

Sysomos MAP - Tumblr Activity

Even over on Instagram we were able to find an incredible 3.3 million photos or videos that were tagged with an #NFL hashtag.

Sysomos MAP - Instagram Activity

We then looked at of those social mentions about football or the NFL and how they played out over time. It’s no surprise that the majority of the action occurred on Sunday the 7th, as Sunday’s have the most amount of NFL games. We can also see that on Thursday the 4th there was a lot of talk. Again, no surprise as this night was the first game of the entire season and everyone who likes football likely tuned in to watch. That said though, Monday the 8th didn’t see any slow down in chatter either for Monday Night Football.

Sysomos MAP - Popularity Chart

We then looked a little deeper into Twitter since it seemed to be the main hub of social activity. We started by looking at the hashtags that were being used most around NFL and football mentions. By looking at these hashtags we can make the assumption that the Green Bay vs Seattle and Indianapolis vs Denver games seemed to be the most popular games as the #GBvsSEA and #INDvsDEN were the only game specific hashtags that showed up in the top ten. Either that, or those four teams have some of the most active football fans on Twitter. As well, the hashtag #RayRice hashtag is showing up because of something completely non-related to opening weekend that happened on Monday, but since he is (was?) a NFL football player, he was being mentioned around our search terms.

Sysomos MAP - Top Hashtags on Twitter

We ended our little look-see by asking what the most retweeted tweets were on NFL kickoff weekend. Here we found many a tweet about the joy that football season had started again. However, the most retweeted tweet between Thursday and Monday actually happened on the Monday and goes back to having to do with that unfortunate Ray Rice incident. We don’t really want to go into anything about that situation here, but this unfortunate tweet was found from Rice back in 2011 and seemed to be retweeted ad nauseam when the scandal around him broke on Monday… three years later.

Sysomos MAP - Most Retweeted Tweets

Are you happy that football is back? Which team are you going to be supporting through social this season? Let us know in the comments.

About Sysomos

A Marketwired company, Sysomos is a leading global provider of cutting-edge social media analytics and monitoring technology for brands, businesses and agencies. Learn more about Sysomos here.

This post is the fourth part of a multi-part series with our partner Sysomos, exploring how social media impacts our world.

To read the first post in the series, click here.

To read the second post in the series, click here.

To read the third post in the series, click here.

Social Media Week