Snapchat Kicks Off NFL Deal

Appealing to a broader audience, Snapchat just entered into a one-year content distribution deal with the National Football League. Per the pact, the league will funnel photos and videos into Snapchat’s popular Live Stories feature through Super Bowl Sunday.

The pair has agreed on a weekly programming schedule that will feature all 32 NFL teams. Curated by Snapchat, each NFL Live Story will include a mix of fan-submitted Snaps and “official inside access” content.

Not purely a promotional play on the NFL’s part, the partners are offering brands placement in each Live Story.

For brands, Snapchat represents a “unique vehicle” for reaching new audiences, in the words of Blake Stuchin, director of digital media business development for the NFL.

The match-up already appears to be attracting a big audience. A Live Story that featured footage and images from the NFL Draft in Chicage was viewed by nearly 15 million fans, by Snapchat’s count.

Trying to keep up with younger consumers and their changing media habits, the NFL has pursued partnerships with various social media leaders.

The league and Twitter recently entered into a two-year content-sharing partnership, which expanded on a deal first signed in 2013.

Snapchat  would welcome whatever revenues come out of the partnership. The messaging startup reportedly lost $128 million on about $3 million in revenue last year. Not quite starving for cash, however, the company that popularized disappearing messages appears to have stockpiled roughly $320 million.

Snapchat recently raised an additional $537 million in new funding, which valued the company at $16 billion -- prompting renewed scrutiny of its business model and potential profitability. 

The company reportedly expects to take in $50 million in revenue this year and upwards of $200 million next year. Recently reported by Re/code, the projections would secure Snapchat’s position as a top social network in terms of popularity and earning power.

The company claims to have 100 million users who watch 2 billion videos per day, suggesting it could be a serious rival to YouTube and Facebook. On average, Snapchat’s Live Stories now attract an audience of 20 million people every 24 hours, Re/code recently reported.

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