How the Detroit Lions Monetized the Draft with Interactive Cloud Graphics

NFL Draft night — a stepping stone for athletes to launch their career, and an opportunity for teams to build excitement with their fans for the upcoming season. This year, teams across the league leaned into this exciting offseason event, using it as a platform to drive fan engagement, ticket and merchandise sales, and generate valuable visibility for corporate partners through cloud graphics.

The Detroit Lions, in particular, exemplified how to maximize the hype around the NFL Draft as they hosted a two-day Virtual Draft Party highlighted by celebrity interviews and interactive segments that engaged the viewer and put the spotlight on corporate partners. 

The key that brought the whole production to life? You guessed it — Tagboard’s cloud-based production suite.

“Tagboard has taken our live production to a new level.  Accomplishing tasks that we’ve executed in the past have become much more dynamic and efficient, and implementing new features into our shows has made them much more engaging for fans.  We’re moving beyond viewership to participation.”

DUSTYN BLINDERT 
SENIOR NEW MEDIA PRODUCER

The Goal:

Heading into the 2021 NFL Draft, the Detroit Lions had three main goals in mind:

  1. Provide fans with an immersive, team-centric virtual experience around the NFL Draft, growing the audience from their 2020 NFL Draft show.
  2. Drive meaningful fan engagement within the show through direct interactive segments that give fans a voice in the programming.
  3. Produce high-quality programming with a small staff that provides corporate partners valuable visibility.

The Execution:

In order to accomplish these objectives, the Detroit Lions produced two interactive livestream events distributed on Facebook and YouTube. 

Leveraging Tagboard’s cloud-based graphics engine, Senior New Media Producer, Dustyn Blindert, created a custom L-Bar frame complete with rotating partner logos, team merchandise promotions, QR codes prompting fans to vote on interactive polls, and a rundown organizing the show content. With experience producing all of the Detroit Lions live content throughout the 2020-21 season, both Blindert and New Media Producer, Derek Heitman, directed the show out of the control room with ease while the rest of the crew operated on-set or remotely. 

Throughout the live show, fans had the opportunity to contribute by voting on poll questions to “Play GM”. They could also add live commentary in a social ticker or ask questions to celebrities like Barry Sanders who answered them live on air.

Lions L-Bar with live interactive poll results and promo graphics produced with Tagboard

With just two control room producers and a six-person crew total, the Lions put together two highly engaging and entertaining shows that captured the attention of their fans and drew strong value for presenting partners.

The Results:

The results from these two interactive shows speak for themselves:

  • The shows garnered over 54K total views with an average watch time of 13min and 15min on nights 1 and 2, respectively. This average watch time went far beyond the Lions average on other video content, showing an increased interest and focus on the programming.
  • The presenting partner logo accumulated 3 Million impressions within the shows — a 76% increase from 2020 when the Lions did not use Tagboard to seamlessly integrate partner logos through interactive cloud-based graphics
  • 237K total engagements and 292.6M Impressions on the #OnePride hashtag promoted throughout the week
  • Over 500 total votes on interactive polls, which were promoted exclusively on the live show

For more information on how this widely successful initiative came to life and how you could get started today, please email us at success@tagboard.com, or reach out on Twitter @Tagboard.