Fox Eyes More Streaming Ad Sales as NFL Season Starts

Fox, which this season is adding Thursday Night Football to its NFL portfolio, expects to sell more streaming advertising after getting expanded digital and mobile rights from the league.

In addition to selling ads on its own websites and mobile apps, Fox will be selling national advertising inventory within streams of its games on the NFL app across all devices, Verizon media properties including Yahoo Sports on phone and tablets and during the 11 Thursday Night Football games on Amazon Prime Video and Twitch.

The network also has signed up Buffalo Wild Wings as the sponsor of its NFL post game show. Verizon and Toyota will be the sponsors of Fox’s new Thursday Night Football halftime show. The game itself is presented by Bud Light.

This season, the TV networks that pay big bucks to carry NFL games have additional streaming rights, making the games easier to find for fans.

Related: CBS to Stream Super Bowl on All Access App, Mobile

Fox says it has seen a 70% increase in minutes of live sports consumed on its digital platforms year over year.

Selling ad inventory across the NFL, Verizon and Amazon mobile platforms also lets Fox offer additional scale to advertisers.

“With the support of our partners at the NFL, we are improving the fan experience by making it easier to watch football games, while also making it more effective than ever for brands to reach fans on the digital platforms that they are increasingly turning to,” said David Levy, group executive VP of advertising revenue at Fox Networks Group.

“Our live sports streaming is becoming more and more popular with viewers; our minutes of consumption grew ten-fold over past three years. With the addition of TNF, we believe the digital consumption of our live sports is going to increase exponentially, offering incredible opportunities for fans, brands, Fox and the league,” Levy said.

Fox is adding Thursday Night Football to its long-running Sunday afternoon NFL package this season. Fox agreed to pay the league $3 billion over five years, outbidding NBC and CBS, which split Thursday Night Football the previous two seasons.

Thursday Night Football games broadcast on Fox will also be distributed on television via the NFL Network and on Fox Deportes during weeks 4 through 15 of the season, excluding Thanksgiving night.

The games will be available via digital on Fox Sports and Fox Deportes on an authenticated basis across devices, on and the NFL app across devices, Amazon Prime Video and Twitch across devices and Verizon’s Yahoo Sports, Yahoo, AOL Sports, AOL, Tumblr and Complex on phone and tablets on a cross-carrier basis.

Sunday afternoon and postseason NFL games broadcast on Fox will be available on an authenticated bases on Fox Sports across devices, on the Verizon platforms on phone and tablets on a cross carrier basis, and and the NFL app across devices.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.