The Super Bowl is not only the second most watched sporting event in the world (The Champions League soccer final is number one) it’s a huge event for any number of industries. It’s a big deal to the network broadcasting the game and more often than not is the most watched television program of the year in the United States. ‘Super Bowl Sunday’ generates more food sales than any other annual event with the exception of Thanksgiving. It is the largest single betting event in Nevada sports books and second biggest worldwide behind only the aforementioned Champions League Final. And with so much consumer spending at stake it’s a big day for the advertising industry.
If early sales are any indication this year’s Super Bowl in New Orleans, Louisiana could be one of the biggest ever for advertisers. In contrast to some years where ad sales languish until closer to game time the early marketplace this year has been very brisk. To date there are 11 brands that have already agreed to pay $3.8 million for a 30 second Super Bowl ad. The latest to join the group are Oreo, Coca Cola, Best Buy and Mercedes Benz.
Mercedes’ involvement is pretty much a no brainer since they also own the naming rights for the Super Bowl venue (the Mercedes Benz Superdome). The German auto manufacturer skipped last year’s Super Bowl but clearly found the ad synergy this year just too gook to pass up.
It’s important to note that not *every* advertiser pays the exact same amount for a 30 second spot. The real cost varies based on a number of factors including placement within the game, the company’s previous relationship with the network and total number of ads bought. No matter how you slice it, it’s a hefty fee to reach one of the largest television audiences of the year. According to CBS, nearly 90% of the Super Bowl ad time is already sold.
Frito Lay may have the most innovative ad campaign of any company–their annual “Crash the Super Bowl” competition invites would be film makers to create their own ad. The winner will get to work with noted director Michael Bay on the next installment of ‘The Transformers’ movie franchise.