NFL Super Bowl XLIX: Best 100 American football blogs

Update 2016-02-05 – Super Bowl: The best NFL blogs for fans

CLICK on IMAGE - 83% of readers SHARE this on WhatsAPP NOWSummary: Which NFL team is the 2015 Super Bowl Champion in blogging?
Who has more influence, reader engagement and social shares?
Team-written blogs or fan blogs?

Find out how well your favourite blog ranks and what you missed, right here!

Also of interest

DrKPI Benchmark: Top 100 Lifestyle Blogs in Deutschland (in German)
DrKPI Benchmark: Top 100 CEO bloggers at WEF Davos 2015

NFL and Blogging
NFL and Blogging

1. The best NFL blog?

Curious? Join 1500 other subscribers to this blog’s newsletter and read on!

What is your prediction for Super Bowl 2015? What are the odds for this championship game?

Super Bowl 49 will be played out on SUnday, February 1, 2015 by the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks.

Instead of discussing the odds, predictions and more about the upcoming championship game, I thought we would share the winners and losers of the NFL Blogosphere.

Top 10 rankings January 2014

We did a ranking in 2014 and the winners were:

1. The Buffalo Bills, who already did very well in the 2013 rankings.
3. Richard Eisen, an American television journalist who works for the NFL Network.
4. Arizona Cardinals
5. Houston Texans
7. Green Bay Packers

None of the teams playing in Super Bowl XLVIII appeared in the top 10.

Top football blogs for 2014: DrKPI Benchmarks the NFL

Top 10 rankings January 2015

The Champions League football final in Europe is the most-watched annual television event in the world. Trailing just behind it is American football’s Super Bowl.

A look at the cost of 30 seconds of ad time during the event shows that the Super Bowl defninitely tops the Champions League final (click image for more).

cost-of-30-seconds-of-ad-time-during-the-superbowl
Who are the biggest ad spenders?
How much money are you spending for your 30-second TV ad during the Super Bowl?

But since 2013, many NFL teams have closed their blogs. For instance, the New England Patriots have fans blogging on their site, but they have no team blog per se. The same applies to the Baltimore Ravens.

If you want to visit the Chicago Bears‘ blog,  you are out of luck; the image below shows the blog has been taken offline.

NFL-Blog-Chicago-Bears-com-closed
The Chicago Bears’ Blog is closed

Also of interest are the Pittsburgh Steelers. The NFL website links to http://news.steelers.com/news/, but once you arrive there, you get redirected to the Steelers’ webshop. Not that amusing if a fan is looking for the team blog (see below).

NFL-Pittsburgh-Steeler-Blog-re-routes-to-Web-Shop
I would like to see the blog, not shop!

Other teams just stopped blogging, such as the Atlanta Falcons (no new blog entry since 2013).

From broadcasting to engagement

Everybody wants engagement, but in some cases blogs don’t get it. In other words, not all of the ranked blogs get their readers to write a comment or two, so there’s hardly a conversation worth talking about on any NFL blog.

Most importantly, last year’s number 1, the Buffallo Bills, dropped to 13 for 2015. Plus, the Green Bay Packers have moved up from number 7 to 3 this year.
NFL-Top-10-Blogs

Top 10 NFL Blogs – early January 2015

Of course, even with a website instead of a blog, we need to watch the total-time-reading or TTR of those visitors. That will be a problem at the moment since all visitors currently get a popup ad encouraging them to buy when visiting each team’s website.

Sehawks-annoying-pop-up-ad

Even if one clicks on the ad and not the X in the upper right corner, one ends up at the page shown below. This looks the same for all teams.

Patriots-annoying-pop-up-ad

Click out of all these things and you get a big surprise. For starters, instead of getting to the Patriots’ blog, you have to navigate a nearly-impossible maze. Usability was not the NFL’s foremost concern when these things were moved from WordPress to the current system.

Besides usability concerns, the blog entries are not written by anybody from the organisation. These are community members who post, or columns from the NFL’s main site and elsewhere. Accordingly, if there were a conversation on the Patriots blog, it would be from fans to fans not team to fans and vice versa.

These authors are not part of our team - so they do not have the inside scoop!

Benchmark and test your blog – for free – right now

Tips for the 2015-2016 Season Super Bowl Teams

In case your NFL team is considering starting a blog in the not-so-distant future, they should keep these three things in mind:

Football bloggers: Ropes to Skip

1. The NFL needs to learn what a conversation is. Claiming 50 or 70 million people ‘joined the conversation’ during the Super Bowl game is one thing. Having a conversation is something else.

2. Dialogue is not monologue. Accordingly, if only a few share your team’s content on Facebook or Twitter, how do you know that anybody cares about it? Total-time-reading is what matters. Unfortunately, it looks like most viewers just glance around and leave the site without reading at all. Is that being attentative?

3. Forget the community blogs on NFL teams’ websites. Have a REAL team blog on your website. Also, drop the current blogging mock-up software and replace it with the real stuff – WordPress – as used before. Nobody can figure out why most teams dropped it. Fans are eager to hear from players directly. As an NFL team, it’s about time that you join the conversation and start being authentic.

Do you agree with these points? Write a comment below to have your say, and please join the conversation!

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Is your blog on the list? If not, add the URL as a comment below, we’ll do the rest.

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<a title=”CLICK on IMAGE – DrKPI – 100 top NFL blogs” href=”http://blog.drkpi.com/?p=994″ target=”_blank”><img style=”float: center; padding: 5px; margin: 0px; border: 2px initial;” src=”http://blog.drkpi.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/top-100-american-football-blogs.png  ” alt=”CLICK on IMAGE – DrKPI – 100 top NFL blogs.” border=” ” /></a>

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Please: I am asking for your help

1. Who is your favourite American football blogger? Let us know in the comments below!
2. Do you read an NFL blog that stimulates great engagement?

Thanks so much for being willing to share your insights!

Curious? Join 1500 other subscribers to this blog’s newsletter and read on!

Here is the complete list of the Top 100 American Football blogs from DrKPI.

Top-100-American-Football-Blogs-ranking

Have we joined the conversation?

Interesting is that American fans are less likely to join a conversation on a blog with content about American Football than their German counterparts (see image below). The same applies, albeit to a lesser degree, to Canadian fans. They are more willing to discuss issues on a blog about football than US fans.

German-AND-CDN-blogs-have-more-conversation-than-US-ones-about-American-Football
German fans are more likely to join the conversation on a blog about American Football than their US counterparts.

Are we sharing this blog content?

What about social sharing? Remember, giving something a Like or re-posting it on Facebook – it only takes a few seconds. As our data reveal, Brazilian fans are currently most likely to share content about American Football from blogs on social networks. Spanish fans follow.

While this suggests that the audience goes beyond North America, for all practical purposes, sharing in other markets is non-existent as far as blog content is concerned.

Please comment, how do you see this matter of sharing?

Brazilian-AND-Spanish-fans-share-more-content-from-American-football-blogs-than-US-fans
Who shares American Football content the most on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc.?

 

Urs E. Gattiker

Professor Urs E. Gattiker - DrKPI is corporate Europe's leading social media metrics expert (see his books). He continues to work with start-ups. Urs is CEO of CyTRAP Labs GmbH.

33 thoughts on “NFL Super Bowl XLIX: Best 100 American football blogs

  • 1. February 2015 at 10:40
    Permalink

    Hi Urs
    Great stuff
    I sometimes wonder what it is … all about money. The teams post a few things on their websites but as you write above, right now it is about getting us each to subscribe and pay for their special feeds.
    I agree with you, most teams had WordPress blogs until about 2013 and then suddenly, NFL folks had this great idea of dropping it. The software that replaced it is terrible.

    Quite frankly, I avoid NFL teams’ websites as much as I can…. sad but true.
    I might watch though … 🙂

    Reply
    • 1. February 2015 at 11:02
      Permalink

      Yes advertising is a big business here. A Super Bowl TV spot is not your usual TV commercial. It is a fully integrated attempt to entertain, create buzz and push product.

      Some suggest that advertisers use 1 of 3 strategies to get their message across to consumers.
      I quote here from the Financial Times: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/122f6a08-a705-11e4-9c4d-00144feab7de.html

      THE RETURNING CHAMPION: Budweiser’s heart string-pulling “Lost Dog” ad, featuring a thwarted love affair between a puppy and a horse, has already been aired on TV and is available to watch on YouTube, Twitter, where it has been retweeted more than 44,000 times, and Facebook, where it has been shared more than 620,000 times.”

      THE ROOKIE: First-time advertiser Mophie, maker of portable mobile device battery cases, is throwing its hat in the ring to help generate buzz for the entire market.”

      THE INTERCEPTION: With its Twitter-based campaign, carmaker Volvo is eschewing a pricey TV ad. Instead it is instructing viewers to send tweets during other automakers’ adverts, nominating someone to win a new car from the company. The group even calls the stunt “Volvo Interception” and describes it as an “alternative to game-day television advertisements”.”

      So this is where the money is. But of course, like all of us I wonder if the buzz around these things will really create the sales that advertisers hope for. Often this highly expensive buzz is not achieving what advertisers hoped for. Like the Super Bowl, we will have some winners and loosers. I don’t dare to guess but Volvo looks like one… and so this Bud.

      Word-of-mouth marketing, buzz marketing or viral marketing – why it fails more often than we think (click to get story)

      Buzz, viral and word-of-mouth marketing- HOW IT WORKS

      Reply
  • 1. February 2015 at 12:18
    Permalink

    Dear Urs

    Wow, long and detailed post. I suppose your report to the #NFL is even more detailed.

    What can I say, it shows the malaise. Football clubs in the US are interested in sending information to their fans. They are not interested in really hearing from them, are they? Okay, when they enter their credit card code at the ticket office, maybe. Or when they purchase fan articles… but other than that, not really.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • 1. February 2015 at 12:21
      Permalink

      Dear Ming

      Thanks for sharing. Yes, the advertising is a serious business indeed.
      And engagement of the real kind (i.e. writing content, answering comments) is not scalable. In other words it takes time and effort to do it right.

      In this case I suspect that clubs feel, by having a website where fans can post, and some re-shared content (e.g., newswire material and press releases)… as well as some people being paid to post, they have a community. But if you look carefully, it is all intended to send out news and content. In many cases its classical ranting or praising of what the club has done… achieved. Simply boring.

      Advertisers are treating social networks (e.g., Facebook pages), NFL teams’ websites or blogs more like TV, investing in glassy videos. Of course, they hope that this content can be targeted at specific groups. But there is not much “social” about this.
      The strategy might work but if it still works this year is questionable… surely no longer for Super Bowl 2016 ! Fans will get disenchanted with this kind of content.
      Ming, thanks for sharing.

      The big show this is....

      Reply
  • 1. February 2015 at 15:05
    Permalink

    Success factor number 1 for Sports Communities is attractive CONTENT:
    Good example:
    ZSC Lions (Swiss Ice Hockey) on Facebook. The better the previews, winning messages and background reports, the better the comments and dialogues.
    Emil

    Reply
    • 1. February 2015 at 16:30
      Permalink

      Dear Emil

      Thanks so much for taking the time to write a comment in our blog. I appreciate it very much.
      Yes of course, the best thing is attractive content. Especially content that club representatives, coaches and players can contribute.

      If I use your reasoning (Swiss Hockey Club, ZSC Lions), however, then the Seahawks and Patriots should have a very active community since they are both very successful. But far from it.
      Insider stuff that fans want to know about, such as an interview with an injured player. . But nothing of that sort can be found on their websites.

      And that is lacking sad but reality. Engagement means you have to do it with some type of emotion… “Herzblut.”

      What you think Emil?

      Reply
      • 4. February 2015 at 17:13
        Permalink

        The Zürich Lion Icehockey Club is successful with 7 to 20 posts during the season:
        – Interviews with players
        – News from the playerfront
        – Club news such as Juniors education, benefit events, ….
        – pre- and post-views or every game with exklusive pictures
        – ….
        The tonality is interesting and the make up attractive.
        A good way to increase two-way communications and like-generation.

        Reply
        • 4. February 2015 at 18:58
          Permalink

          Dear Emil
          Thanks for adding more interesting stuff to my blog entry. Much appreciated.

          The ZSC Lions Website is VERY interesting.
          To get a better feel for the website, we did a Social Media Audit Light. This includes 30 questions using a standardised and validated test we have developed.
          Here are a few findings:

          1. Every user that visits the site arrives at a page that forces him once again to click one more time to get where she wishes to go (i.e. 1 click too many), such as Website, TV, Tickets (see screenshot below).
          2. Once you have made your choice, you arrive at the what is called website or tickets. In both cases, you need to click again on, for instance, News.
          3. The size of the fonts …. if your eyesight is less than perfect, it hurts after about 5 minutes… Forget the visually impaired, they are out of luck etc.

          If one checks the numbers
          Sharing of content on social networks (e.g., Instagram, Tumblr, Facebook….) is way below the average for other hockey clubs (e.g., Davos, Lausanne, etc.) (we collect these stats.).

          Emil, like you I find the content to be valuable / interesting. Nevertheless, you would probably agree that way it is being offered is classical Web 1.0 – that is broadcasting pure. I cannot see any two-way engagement or even better a dialogue between the readers and the club / team members.

          So we agree the material is of great interest. However, I find that like with food…. how you present it on a plate matters to your dinner guests.
          What you think Emil?

          Does the ZSC Lions webpage foster engagement and dialog: DrKPI Social Media Audit says...

          Reply
  • 1. February 2015 at 16:57
    Permalink

    Superbowl commercials are now entertainment and part of the overall “experience”. It has come so far that there is now advertising for advertising and people being asked to preview and rate those commercials.
    I would think that Superbowl commercials have little in common with regular advertising. They are less targeted towards pushing product but towards people identifying themselves with a product or at least putting it on their “dream list”………..like Mercedes.
    Well, when it comes to advertising as a whole, I’m more interested in seeing the effect it has on people and how the masses react to the media. In my opinion, advertising opens a window into the soul and brain of people. In order to understand people, I have to look at the advertising they’re being targeted with.

    Reply
    • 1. February 2015 at 17:21
      Permalink

      Yes of course, you are correct Hans. Super Bowl advertising is different than usual advertising

      As I told Wende, there are three ways on how advertisers approach this:
      1. The returning champion
      2. the rockie, and
      3. the interceptor

      And while it may work for consumer groups, as the image below shows, it is an expensive optiont to take to push your brand.
      It is probably more entertainment then a chance to sell any product…
      Hans, thanks for sharing.

      Commercials are big business

      Reply
  • 1. February 2015 at 17:08
    Permalink

    As for blogs.
    1. Is there any research that clearly describes the various reasons and the motivation behind participation?
    2. Does it create the interest and increased participation?
    3. Is it a club or is it an individual blogger creating high interes?
    4. Can a blog develop it’s own dynamics based on blogger input?

    I would think so. Guess it’s a science like advertising. It is playing games with emotions and opinions.

    Reply
    • 1. February 2015 at 17:33
      Permalink

      Hans,
      Thanks for raising this issue. Difficult questions to answer in a blog comment.

      1. Yes, I have described it in my latest book. In the book I review the chapters and I explain in detail what it takes and how it could work.
      http://SecURL.de/Buch14

      2. Yest, blogs with influence do create interest and participation by readers. If nobody cares about the stuff we write, no comments.

      3. I think it can be either way. For instance, if players post from time-to-time on the club’s blog, it does create interest. Same happens if the clubs coach and / or president blog from time-to-time. Similar to a CEO that contributes from time-to-time.

      4. Yes I think blogger input can result in a blog getting a certain dynamic…… It can also raise new issues than the bloggers can write about.

      Thanks Hans for sharing.

      Reply
  • 2. February 2015 at 15:31
    Permalink

    The game is over.
    The hype is over and now debate and discussion for a few days or weeks. Then, the mercenaries will move on and follow the money trail. This is what I do not like about professional sports.

    Yes, I did watch a little, but to “enjoy the total experience” it would have taken more time than flying from Dallas to Frankfurt.

    – 5 hours “pre-game show”.
    – 30 Minutes “kick-off show” and then of course
    – nearly 4 hours game time.

    Is that one of the reasons why Fussball/Soccer is having a hard time getting into the US market?

    Can you imagine a 90 Minute Soccer game being interrupted all the time and people standing around for 250 Minutes?
    Hans

    Reply
    • 2. February 2015 at 19:24
      Permalink

      Dear Hans

      Thanks also for this great graphic. In 95 minutes you have 11 minutes of actual play
      The replays take more time than the actual plays.
      For a soccer fan, this is surprising.

      Standing around is 67 minutes… simply amazing 🙂

      Little action in American Football

      Merci

      Reply
  • 2. February 2015 at 19:47
    Permalink

    From “Forbes Magazine” :
    George Will once said:
    Football combines the worst two things about America: Violence punctuated by committee meetings.

    This Forbes article (Steve Denning ) also brings some interesting insights into corporate management.

    See also David Biderman in the Wall Street Journal (2010) talking about how the “NFL accurately represents the wasted time in the typical hierarchical bureaucracy.

    Lots of good and interesting reading there.

    Reply
    • 3. February 2015 at 8:29
      Permalink

      Dear Hans
      Yes the game is over and thanks for this link too the Forbes article.

      In another group somebody compared American Football to Gulf. Waiting all the time if you watch a Masters.

      But since I do not know enough about golf (played a few times only) and never watched a game, I cannot comment on that.

      Thanks again for all this great and thoughtful input, you taught me a few things about football, Hans 🙂

      Have a great day
      urs

      Reply
  • 3. February 2015 at 15:25
    Permalink

    Dear Urs,
    thanks . Now we will have to wait until August for football to come alive again. Well, then there is the great “draft pick” show when teams select their players for the next season. There will probably be more activity on those blogs again.
    As for the comparison with Golf, I guess that’s just the nature of the game to stroll around , watch and wait.
    Actually, baseball has been compared to Football; there too and incredible amount of time is being used to complete a game. Many of the people attending these games admit going to the stadium only for the “party atmosphere” .

    All the best
    Hans

    Reply
    • 4. February 2015 at 18:35
      Permalink

      Dear Hans
      Thanks for stopping by – again 🙂

      One of the things NFL teams were advised to do is to keep their team blogs alive between seasons.

      You are right to believe that the “draft pick” should create a lot of interest. But this means 2 weeks before and after this even, blog entries have to be posted about what could and might happen by the teams. But especially, afterwords the new players can be presented. Short videos embedded in the blog would be popular with fans, guaranteed.

      Unless we keep fans up-to-date about interesting developments, next season’s ticket sales might suffer…. Like any other sport, Football is competing for my entertainment dollar in an ever more competitive field of options regarding sport (e.g., hocke, soccer, baseball, basketball…..).

      We will see what the teams will decide. It is one thing to pay for and getting advice about your blogging or lack thereof. It is another big step to abide by these suggestions, buckle up and improve performance.

      Merci Hans and I hope we have a chance to discuss things again.
      Urs

      Reply
      • 4. February 2015 at 18:42
        Permalink

        One more thing, if I may. The current push to “clean up” player image, promoting the “anti domestic violence” movement along with calls for player protection and a set of rules on the filed, there should be enough material to keep things alive.

        Sayonara
        Hans

        Reply
  • 11. March 2015 at 2:51
    Permalink

    Hi
    I just came across this post. Thanks for the statistics about American Football teams’ blogs.
    Very interesting that some of these fail Social Media 101 – introductory course. For starters, no dialogue is happening.

    At least on Fashion Blogs that you measured and talked about here, there is dialogue or reader engagement.
    http://blog.drkpi.de/rating-und-ranking-1/
    Terese

    Reply
  • 12. April 2015 at 2:46
    Permalink

    Dear Urs

    I would think that since the Steelers are the most popular NFL team, their blogs would have the most content and engagement.
    Cowboys perhaps a close second place.

    Reply
    • 12. April 2015 at 10:56
      Permalink

      Dear Lenny

      Thanks so much for your feedback on this topic. I was just wondering where you found a Steelers Weblog? I write above:

      Also of interest are the Pittsburgh Steelers. The NFL website links to http://news.steelers.com/news/, but once you arrive there, you get redirected to the Steelers’ webshop. Not that amusing if a fan is looking for the team blog (see below).

      There was once a blog but no more? If you know about a blog, could you please provide a link right here as a comment? Maybe I missed it?

      Also, where did you find a team blog for the Dallas Cowboys? Again please provide the link for their team blog. They no longer have one as far as we know.

      Can you help please, thanks.
      Have a great weekend.
      Urs

      Reply
  • 12. April 2015 at 15:31
    Permalink

    Good moring,
    Well, I would think that fan blogs often generate more traffic and interest.

    Many of the fans set up their own discussions. Probably hard to measure which clubs spawn the most fan pages and create the biggest buzz.

    Hans

    Reply
    • 12. April 2015 at 16:15
      Permalink

      Dear Hans

      Thanks so much for stopping by again 🙂

      Yes fan blogs may create a lot of traffic and even interest. As our list shows, there are plenty of those that rank much higher than team blogs.

      Nevertheless, if the team blog is done properly (e.g., content with added value for fans), it can create buzz far beyond what the usual fan blog ever could. Moreover, traditional media will pick up such material as well further increasing the team blog’s possible reach beyond the usual fan base.

      So the final verdict – it is probably a toss up looking at our data… but team blogs are at an advantage compared to fan blogs. Their players that blog or comment in a blog have celebrity status. Also team blogs can provide first-hand insider tidbits that fan blogs cannot.

      Thanks for sharing, Hans.

      Reply
  • 12. April 2015 at 17:02
    Permalink

    Hi, I desire to subscribe for this website to obtain most up-to-date updates, thus where can i do it please assist.

    Reply
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  • 16. March 2016 at 4:28
    Permalink

    Fantastic discussion , I learned a lot from the facts –

    Does someone know if I could get access to a blank a form form to fill out ?

    Hi from Virgie

    Reply
    • 16. March 2016 at 8:00
      Permalink

      Dear Virgie

      What kind of form are you looking for?
      http://eepurl.com/mtzsX allows you to sign up for the newsletter?

      Is that what you need, love to have you as a subscriber.
      Thanks and have a great day.
      Urs

      Reply

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