For eleven seasons, Extreme Networks and the NFL have been at the forefront of creating an engaging and ever-expanding digital fan experience. As the Official Wi-Fi Solutions Provider and Wi-Fi Analytics Provider of the NFL, Extreme Networks has played a pivotal role in ensuring seamless connectivity, uncovering fan insights, and enhancing the overall stadium experience.
Each week this season, we've highlighted the moments that electrified stadiums and sent Wi-Fi networks into a frenzy. From iconic halftime performances to heartwarming tributes and game-changing plays, the season has had dozens of unforgettable moments, each leaving a mark on the hearts of fans.
Extreme's Wi-Fi solutions have not only connected fans but also empowered them to share their passion for the game. Wi-Fi analytics, a cornerstone of our partnership with major sports leagues, have provided valuable insights into fan behavior, enabling teams to optimize venue operations and personalize the gameday experience.
Join us as we delve into the top 5 fan engagement highlights from the 2023-2024 NFL season, celebrating the incredible bond created by sports and the collective passion for the game:
The fifth-largest bandwidth spike of the season was a close call between three moments at Lambeau Field, a Pregame Airforce Flyover during week 8 (16.4 Gbps), a Lightshow as the team took the field during week 13 (16.8 Gbps), and the Packers clinching the playoffs during week 18 (16.1 Gbps). Ultimately, the lightshow as the Packers entered the stadium during week 13 created the biggest spike.
During the first week of the season, Patriots fans welcomed Tom Brady backto Gillette Stadium, creating the fourth-largest bandwidth spike of the season. The 7x Super Bowl Champion took the field at halftime, drawing a bandwidth spike of 17.1 Gbps as fans shared the moment.
Another big moment at Lambeau Field was during their week 4 pregame ceremony. For this Thursday Night Football Game, the Packers teamed up with Berlin Health and the Vince Lombardi Cancer Foundation to host their 7th Annual Packers vs Cancer game, honoring cancer survivors and their loved ones as the players took the field. Fans sharing the moment drew an 18.1 Gbps bandwidth spike, creating the largest spike of week 4 and the third-largest spike of the season.
During week 3, the Bengals brought back two of their most iconic players, Boomer Esiason and Chad "Ochocinco" Johnson, to be inducted into the Cincinnati Bengals Ring of Honor Class of 2023 and lead fans in the "Who Dey" chant as the "Rulers of the Jungle." The excitement of seeing the two Bengals legends on the field led to a bandwidth spike of 18.3 Gbps.
But week 3 wasn't the only big week for the "Ruler of the Jungle" ceremony the Bengals host before each home game. During week 9, we saw the biggest bandwidth spike of the entire 2023-24 season take place at Paycor Stadium during a "Ruler of the Jungle" ceremony, this time with two 14-year Bengals taking the field. Kevin Huber and Clark Harris lead the "Who Dey" chant, creating a 21 Gbps bandwidth spike.
In order to create the best fan experience, stadiums need to understand their fans. A big part of this is how they are engaging digitally at events. A recent study by Boldyn Networks found that 72% of fans use venue Wi-Fi. Once fans are on the network, solutions like ExtremeAnalytics give venues insight into how fans interact with the network and use that information to create a better fan experience personalized to what their fans want.
Network analytics play a huge role in understanding fan behaviors. They help venues personalize fan experiences, predict maintenance needs, and make quick decisions based on attendees' behavior. By analyzing these insights, venues can improve operations, allocate resources wisely, and find new revenue opportunities. They also help to identify sponsorships and create tailored marketing approaches, boosting fan connections and ensuring better security at stadiums.
NFL stadiums are already finding innovative ways to use network analytics to up-level the fan experience. Gillette Stadium leverages Wi-Fi analytics to see what applications fans are using and then uses that data to identify marketing partnerships. Lumen Field uses fan behavior data from Wi-Fi analytics to improve game day operations; for example, moving concessions stands to high-traffic areas so that fans can get their food and beverages easily and quickly.
As we wrap up this season, the road to the Super Bowl beckons, promising an epic culmination to this season's journey. Get ready to witness unprecedented fan engagement, electrifying performances, and the crowning of a new champion.
But the excitement doesn't stop with the Super Bowl. Stay tuned for exclusive post-Super Bowl content, where we'll delve into behind-the-scenes insights, fan engagement insights, and the technology that powered the biggest sporting event of the year. Join us as we celebrate the triumphs, reflect on the moments that defined the season, and set the stage for the anticipation of what lies ahead.
The NFL season may be drawing to a close, but the fan engagement journey is far from over!