Google Woos Football Advertisers With Search Offering

Google's tool that places ads alongside football-related search results will prove lucrative not only for the National Football League (NFL), but for brands selling complementary goods and services. It's one of several offerings from media companies used to woo advertisers. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Microsoft Bing are among the others.

The ads will run before official NFL video clips that appear in a box at the top of the search results page, next to scores and news items, reports The New York Times. Similar to the advertisements that run during the Super Bowl, football-related advertising could mean everything from NFL sportswear, Coca-Cola or Pepsi to Lays potato chips, Ball Park hot dogs, or automobile brands such as Chevrolet.

In January, Google released stats that estimate about 70% of game-related searches occurred in the month surrounding the Super Bowl vs. game day in 2014.

Google also pays close attention to college football and trending topics. College football trends on Google between Sept. 2 and Sept. 7 show the top five most-searched college football teams in the United States as Ohio State University, University of Alabama, University of Michigan, Auburn University, and University of Notre Dame.

The state of Alabama took the No. 1 spot for search interest in college football during the past seven days. Mississippi ranked No. 2, followed by Nebraska, Georgia and Tennessee. The Alabama cities ranking highest include Birmingham, Dothan, Huntsville-Decatur, and Montgomery, along with Panama City, Fla.

The top five search queries for football fans are "college board," "tcu football," "ncaa football schedule," "tcu," and "boise state football." Related topics range from ESPN cable television company and ESPN college Football, to schedules and scores.

Braxton Miller, who plays for the Ohio State Buckeyes, is the most-searched college football player in the United States, according to Google. Shawn Oakman from the Baylor Bears follows, along with Dalvin Cook from Florida State Seminoles; Everett Golson, Florida State Seminoles; and Joey Bosa, Ohio State Buckeyes.

Aside from offering football-related search advertisements, Microsoft Bing said it would use its technology to predict fantasy football games and NFL season games, complete with updates and stats on teams each Tuesday, as well as projections on postseason chances. If it becomes the home game-related information during the NFL season, which begins mid-September, the advertising numbers for search, display and video could rise with an increase in search market share.

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