I’ve never been to Nashville (I hear it’s a great city). But, after spending a football Sunday with the Tennessee Titans, when they hosted (and clobbered) the Green Bay Packers, I got a terrific taste of what’s it like at a Titans game, through the magic of social media.
The Titans, like every organization, can’t be everywhere all at once, but they focus on platforms they want to pepper at the right time, repurpose content when possible, and, ultimately, try to give fans a sense of incredible access and closeness to the team, the game, and the experience.
From morning through post game, the Titans kept fans continually engaged on Snapchat. There is clearly some good collaboration and teamwork going on to set the scene and try to have fans not miss anything. The story begins with the obligatory player arrival shots and a shot of the empty stadium. But then, I also liked a little taste of the tailgate, including live music and caricature drawings (and a sweet Nissan green screen activation), before cutting back to the behind-the-scenes of pregame player huddles, high-fives, and intros.
After giving a good glimpse of the pregame flyer, the Titans social media team didn’t retreat into pure Twitter mode. They had a sideline presence throughout the game, giving fans an up-close look at players celebrating after big plays, as well as a front row seat at halftime for an emotional military family ceremony and reunion (those will never get old). Impressive presence and added value with this sideline content, and good to see there’s enough in-game, on-field connectivity to send some Snaps! Notable, however, that the Titans never did use the NFL scoreboard filter nor did they use much of their Titan Up geofilter.
The content kept coming (including use of their geofilter) form the sideline and even captured some un celebrations, as well as a post game meeting of the Titans young star QB Marcus Mariota with the veteran star QB of the Packers, Aaron Rodgers. Worth the effort just for that! This was where the content did end, however, with no shots of an excited locker room or post game pressers. The lack of locker room content may be due to football operations not wanting the social media team in there (I’m sure it was a happy locker room after this win). But, regardless, a dedicated and good job on Snapchat that added value for any fan checking it out.
The Titans were scoring a lot and scoring quickly in their dominant win over Green Bay, which meant they had a busy Twitter account throughout the day and the game. But the Titans were prepared to execute — with a clear strategy, a mix of real-time and pre-made content, share-worthy stats, and some cursory pregame and postgame engagement. They started out with some player retweets, as well a little bit of fan and influencer interaction (including their 12th man for the day, PGA golfer Brandt Snedeker). They also shared a Fox PROCast (a great source of player-driven content), and shared some prepared graphics and videos to set the game day. A simple, but nice touch with the photo of the official lineup sheet to report inactives.
After a decent volume of pregame, prepared content (the pregame intro and access was mainly on Snapchat only), the Titans went into game mode, showcasing a bit of swag and personality, certainly enabled by taking the lead very quickly. We saw an array of player-customized scoring GIFs, template ‘Scoring Drives,’ some SnappyTV NFL clips, and distinct language, but not a ton of emoji usage.
The Titans also shared a handful of stats (not in graphic-form), which was a nice addition for fans and different from other teams that often present this kind of content with retweets of team reporters or PR accounts. They did pay some attention to retweet-worthy content from influential accounts and sporadically retweeted during the game. The Titans did report Packers scores, but typically never provided the score with such tweets. Lastly, while Snapchat gave a look at a tearful halftime military reunion for Veteran’s Day Weekend, Twitter took a break for the Titans at the half.
The Titans continued to embrace an excitable, fun voice on Twitter as the outcome of victory became increasingly certain. The Titans finished off their win with a score graphic (with photo from the game) that showed the final score, sans sponsor logo. After teh game, there was no live video, but a few direct quotes tweeted from the post game. Throughout the game and the post game, but not 100% of the time, the Titans did use the Twitter handles of players in their updates and posts.
The Titans continued to stay active on Twitter in the post game window and later Sunday. They gave us the “Surface” (sponsored) Snapshot of the game, the requisite player retweets, and some in-game video. They also shared a lot of website story links and some post game graphics, which were sharp. (Though one with player names and stats was one that had to be pinched to zoom to see at all). Twitter is a busy platform for the Titans, but just about every tweet has value and is thoughtful and they do infuse personality, real-time and prepared content, along with share-worthy photos and stats.
The Titans didn’t spend a lot of time on Instagram, but what they did do presented strong visuals. They are one of several NFL teams that do not consistently utilize Instagram stories. Their volume of activity was certainly lower on the platform, compared to Snapchat and Twitter. They had some carefully and thoughtfully selected professional photos to capture some of the pregame on-field and re-purposed a pregame graphic used on other platforms. Once the game kicked off, there were no Instagram updates for the Titan, besides halftime and final score. The engagement metrics do not seem to be quite as high as other platforms for the Titans (or for other teams on IG).
After the victory, however, the Titans Instagram came back alive with a lot of well-selected photos and winning-feeling captions, including emoji. The Titans stick to primarily [well-curated] Getty/AP photos, employing some filters, or their Instagram content.
Similar to Instagram, the Titans do not put a lot of time and attention into Facebook during the game, though they do a bit more pregame and post game. Like others, preview content the day / hours before consists of sponsored posts and graphics, an emotion-stirring hype video, and a game day graphic. The Titans also had some unique, tailgate-themed content on the Saturday before game day.
After the pregame hype video, Facebook was mostly idle during the game, with the only posts a halftime score graphic and a similar final score graphic. Even after the big win, there was not much Facebook content, with just two more posts — a link to a website photo gallery and a link to a game recap. Despite the limited activity, the team’s performance led to a decent volume of activity on the final score graphic, but overall Facebook is not where the Titans prioritize their efforts.
The Titans go into a game day with a plan — to be in the right place at the right time and to have the right content ready to go. They cater to their more deeply engaged fans on Twitter and Snapchat and pepper their content with highlights, stats, voice, and retweets. Their social media presence serves as a stellar second screen for fans who had a solid social media companion to go along with a big win on the field.