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How Amazon & the NFL Plan to Own Black Friday

The Dolphins and Jets will square off in the first-ever NFL game on Black Friday. Boardroom gets you ready for some Friday football.

While Amazon doesn’t disclose its Black Friday sales, it reported its best-ever Thanksgiving weekend in 2022, with small businesses alone racking up more than $1 billion.

Even beyond Amazon, Black Friday shopping — online and in stores — is a massive business that marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season. And what better way to attract even more potential shoppers than by combining the year’s busiest day of commerce with America’s most popular sport?

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The first-ever Black Friday NFL game kicks off this week when Tua Tagovailoa and the Miami Dolphins visit Garrett Wilson and the New York Jets in an AFC East battle. Amazon’s Prime Video is in the second year of an 11-year, $11 billion NFL media rights deal. But for its Black Friday special, anyone with an Amazon account can watch the game on Prime Video. They do not need to be Prime subscribers.

Before we get into how Amazon will integrate live shopping into the game, let’s break down some basic information about the broadcast:

  • WHO: Miami Dolphins at New York Jets
  • WHEN: 3 p.m. EST, 1:30 pregame show
  • ON THE CALL: Al Michaels, Kirk Herbstreit, Kaylee Hartung
  • PREGAME HOSTS: Charissa Thompson, Tony Gonzalez, Richard Sherman, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Andrew Whitworth, Taylor Rooks, Michael Smith
  • SPECIAL FEATURES: Award-winning chef David Chang will do a pregame tailgate segment on Thanksgiving leftovers and create a special surprise for the player of the game. Dude Perfect will host a kid-friendly alternative stream during the game.
  • Amazon will stream a postgame performance from Garth Brooks, live from his new Nashville bar at 7 p.m. EST.

Shoppers and football fans with an Amazon Fire TV will have the chance to cash in on special Black Friday deals during the game as well. Through a new innovation that Amazon calls interactive video ads, shoppers will receive special deals and limited quantity product drops from companies including TCL, Dyson, Lego, and Nintendo.

Here’s how it’ll work:

During a commercial break each quarter and once each during the pregame, halftime, and postgame shows, a video ad will include a QR code. Scanning that QR code will bring shoppers to a deal page, where they can simply click “add to cart” with their remotes, or “get email,” which would send a push notification to their phone or email address, linking directly to the advertised product or store page. Most importantly, shoppers won’t need to leave the game stream to purchase.

For one of the busiest and most lucrative shopping days of the year, Amazon aims to use the football experience to keep shoppers engaged. If all goes well for Amazon, customers can shop until they drop without missing a second of the action in a critical game in the AFC East race.

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About The Author
Shlomo Sprung
Shlomo Sprung
Shlomo Sprung is a Senior Staff Writer at Boardroom. He has more than a decade of experience in journalism, with past work appearing in Forbes, MLB.com, Awful Announcing, and The Sporting News. He graduated from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 2011, and his Twitter and Spotify addictions are well under control. Just ask him.