Case Study: Real-Time Fan Engagement Explodes With Live, Local Access to NFL Draft

From the chorus of boos received by Commissioner Goodell as he steps on stage to pontificate the pro potential of each athlete, the NFL Draft coverage is a full-fledged fan engagement event. Once produced predominantly for diehards, more engagement means way more eyeballs, and those eyeballs want to see and hear everything draft-related.

LIVE and NOW are the name of the game when it comes to keeping fans connected to their teams, the competition, commentators, and top college prospects. That is where TVU Networks’ long-standing relationship with the NFL Network is proving to be a game-changer. TVU Networks ecosystem was used on-site in Las Vegas, at team ‘war rooms’ and from athletes’ remote locations.

“Success is built on silence,” explains TVU Networks’ Founder and CEO Paul Shen. “Listening. Hearing. Understanding the problem needing to be solved.”

“The challenge was making sure there was instant, live access to all 32 war rooms and every athlete in the draft,” says Greg Doggett, VP of Business Development. “With traditional broadcast – – the mobile trucks, technicians, logistics, and operators involved would take hundreds of humans and hundreds of thousands of dollars to pull off. TVU is not traditional broadcast.”

Bringing in 50 plus live shots to one remote location resulted in the network renting 27 Dual-R transceivers in Las Vegas from TVU. Getting the shots out of war rooms from across the country took significantly less stuff. All it took was a phone furnished with the free TVU Anywhere App that aggregates cell service and wifi into one blazing fast connection.

“Every single team in America, every shot 100% stable, everything super-low latency, and everything perfectly in sync. Everything went very well,” adds Doggett.

Top prospects got another solution from TVU. They were all sent TVU One packs to cover their celebrations and fan parties live with no risk of missed moments. The compact TVU One is about half the size of a lunchbox, aggregating bandwidth via multiple 5G and 4G cards with home internet to send a robust and reliable IS+ 4k HD signal. Moreover, with the TVU Progressive Download feature, once a camera is attached, all video is recorded and ready for instant replay while no ‘money shots’ are missed, no matter what the area bandwidth.

This complemented the TVU infrastructure already integrated with the NFL Network to create a finished product with fans craving more.

“The ratings, particularly on connected TV and digital platforms, were through the roof,” says Doggett, “and retention was superb. With so much live action and access, it was impossible to turn off. We strive to reach higher levels with each workflow and working with the NFLN was an honor.”

For this year’s draft, teams possessing a TVU Transceiver on-site already received return feeds via TVU Grid. TVU Search recorded every live input for later use. The NFL Network and NFL monitored all feeds on TVU GridLink with content indexed and available in perpetuity to the cloud-native TVU ecosystem. That is just the beginning.

In 2023 the TVU team plans to leverage their QR code technology to create individual ‘fan engagement’’ experiences with their favorite teams. “Building on the exclusive access fans received this year, making the experience two-way is the next logical step and it’s what we’re ready to do with several NFL teams this year,” concluded Doggett.

To learn more about TVU live engagement solutions, click HERE.

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