The NFL is the most profitable and relevant sporting league in the history of the world. They have created a 365 day calendar that is so full of events that they never leave the spotlight for very long. When your business wants to take some tips from the NFL, you need to be willing to change as the NFL has.
There was a time when the NFL had a 15-week season, a draft that lasted a couple day, three weeks of playoffs and they dropped off the radar for the rest of the year. The cleared the way for Major League Baseball as a sort of gentleman’s agreement between the two leagues. The NFL had the fall and winter while the MLB were the boys of spring and summer. It made the American sports landscape simple, but the baseball season was so long that it was easy to forget about football. The draft was not televised, and the Super Bowl was shown on delay for the first few years of its life.
When Pete Rozelle became commissioner, he moved to expand the season to 16 games, and he was able to increase the number of teams that made the playoffs. The NFL had to expand its season, and it was able to take some time away from basketball and baseball. They were not trying to railroad the other sports because they did not want to start a war, but they wanted to be relevant all the time. That formula worked for many years until the NFL became so popular that they knew they needed to take the next step.
They Moved The Draft
The first thing to happen was moving the draft. When the NFL moved the draft, they were putting the draft in a different month than the scouting combine. Having the draft and scouting combine in separate months allowed the league to remain relevant every month after the Super Bowl. By the time the draft was over, teams were having OTAs. This was yet another reason to talk about the league, and the two months of OTAs lead directly into the preseason.
They create press all the time. The league wants to have sports talk shows, journalists and TV shows to talk about the NFL all the time. The NFL knows that they are not going to be the lead in every one of these broadcasts, but they know that they will be talked about. The press that they generate throughout the year is enough to keep people hungry for more football.
How Do You Do It?
When you are trying to make your company as relevant as possible, you need to be willing to space out the things that you do best. Give your customers a reason to come back to you every month, and make sure that your customers always have a reason to see you. Your business is going to thrive if you take a page from the NFL and stay relevant more than your competition.
It is often why we work with clients and have them stagger news and announcements to keep a constant flow of media attention on their firm.