The NFL is (by quite a significant margin) the undisputed champ of American sports. Despite their impressive stature, the league continues its efforts of expanding their fanbase.
Whether this is reaching out to Latin Americans (who often favour a completely different “football”) or expanding further afield and growing a global audience; this season the NFL is bringing five games to England and Germany, giving the European market a taste of the live action. Then there’s Thursday Night Football, which streams on Amazon Prime Video in hopes of snagging a younger more tech-savvy crowd.
But one less-obvious and unplanned ace up their sleeve for brand growth was the impact of Taylor Swift attending the games. After being seen at a few of the Kansas City Chiefs games in support of her new NFL superstar beau Travis Kelce, the initial commercial results are already evident:
- Sales in Kelce jerseys have said to have spiked by a whopping 400%, putting him in the top 5 players in the NFL for jersey sales.
- Stubhub reported a threefold increase in Chief’s ticket searches.
TV ratings spiked, as Fox Sports announced that one game drew 24.3 million viewers, making it the weekend's most-watched NFL match.
- The same game also had the highest volume of female viewers between 12-49 years of age. As Professor Angeline Scheinbaum said, "It's a great opportunity for the NFL to bring in not only a new demographic of younger women who may have felt excluded from the game before, but also a new psychographic of people who are just looking for fun and entertainment.”
This influence has been coined the ‘Taylor Swift Effect’ - a term used to express the superstar’s sway on collective behaviour.