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Volume 26 No. 3
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NFL Partners With Instagram To Streamline Draft Day Hat Sales

Instagram shopping tags for the hats will push users to the NFL Shop so they can immediately buy them
Photo: new era cap

The NFL and Instagram will create a "first-of-its-kind digital shopping experience" around the New Era hats that first-round picks wear at the NFL Draft tonight, according to Todd Spangler of VARIETY. Each draftee will be photographed backstage wearing the hat of the team that has picked them, and those photos will then be "shared to the @NFL account on Instagram with shopping tags." The tags will "kick users over to the NFL Shop and let them immediately buy the hat." NFL Senior VP/Social & Influence Marketing Ian Trombetta: “We’re able to merge commerce with our social platforms in a very organic way." No money is "changing hands between the NFL and Facebook-owned Instagram." The partnership "came together when execs from both sides met at Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta to discuss ways of working together, which resulted in the shoppable draft day concept." Trombetta said that the NFL "doesn’t have specific benchmarks for measuring the success of the Instagram draft-day execution" (, 4/24).

AHEAD OF THE CURVE: QUARTZ' Mike Murphy notes for this year's NFL Draft, Fanatics "expects to be selling new products for players seconds after each pick comes in." Fanatics' infrastructure, "coupled with its mobile presence, gives the company a huge advantage." Retailers typically have to "choose which jerseys to stock for each team before the sport's season starts." For rookies, they will "only ask for jerseys of the most well-known players" from the Draft "after they become early picks." However, there usually is no set plan for teams' late picks, or for "what happens when picks don't go as planned." Meanwhile, in "just about any situation that might see a random player do something noteworthy, Fanatics can analyze signals on social media" and "mock up that player's jersey on the spot" (, 4/25).