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Marketing to Sports Fans Online, With Help from Google and Social Networks

Marketing to Sports Fans Online, With Help from Google and Social Networks

When the National Football League season begins on Thursday, Google will not be merely sitting on the sidelines.

Seeking to help advertisers capture the attention of the sport’s millions of fans, the company has built a tool for its search product that places ads alongside football-related results. The ads will run before official N.F.L. video clips that will appear in a box at the top of the page, next to scores and news items.

Google’s N.F.L. offering is one of the many football-related marketing programs that websites and social networks have introduced to woo advertisers, who are clamoring for new ways to capitalize on live events — and the way that people flock to social media to talk about them.

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