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Bryan Altman

DENVER (CBS4) – If you’re looking for proof that the defending Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos have some of the best fans of any team in the NFL, look no further than a new study that ranks the NFL’s fan bases from best to worst based on a purely analytical approach.

In the study – conducted annually by Dr. Michael Lewis of Emory University – Broncos fans ranked No. 3 of all the NFL’s fans in 2016 through what Lewis calls the “Dynamic Fan Equity” (DFE) methodology of caluclation.

So, what exactly does that mean?

Basically, Dr. Lewis uses two methods to figure out which team has the most loyal fan base and he has dubbed them the “Fan Equity and Social Media Equity” methods.

The Fan Equity method “focuses on home box office revenues (support via opening the wallet)” while the Social Media Equity method “focuses on fan willingness to engage as part of a team’s community (support exhibited by joining social media communities),” according to the article published by Lewis on his website.

By combining those methods, Lewis has created the aforementioned “Dynamic Fan Equity” method of calculation. Here’s how final ranking is produced, courtesy of Dr. Lewis’ article.

“The DFE measure leverages the best features of the two measures.  Fan Equity is based on the most important consumer trait – willingness to spend.  Social Equity captures fan support that occurs beyond the walls of the stadium and skews towards a younger demographic.  The key insight that allows for the two measures to be combined is that there is a significant relationship between the Social Media Equity trend and the Fan Equity measure.  Social media performance turns out to be a strong leading indicator for financial performance.

Dynamic Fan Equity is calculated using current fan equity and the trend in fan equity from the team’s social media performance.

Dr. Lewis also added that the research is based off of “15 years of attendance data and 4 years of social data.”

Beating out the Broncos in this year’s study were the New England Patriots and Dallas Cowboys at No.’s 1 and 2, respectively. You can click here to see where every NFL team ranked.

In last year’s Fan Equity Rankings conducted by Dr. Lewis, the Broncos ranked No. 13, so clearly a successful year has buoyed the Broncos fan base.

Bryan Altman is, for some reason, an unabashed fan of the Rangers, Jets and Mets. If he absolutely had to pick a basketball team it would be the Knicks, but he’d gladly trade them for just one championship for any of his other three teams.

Questions or comments? Feel free to follow Bryan on Twitter or send him an email.

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