The Super Bowl is one of the most exhilarating displays of athletic competition known to mankind. Fans wait all season for the championship game, cheering on their team, heckling the opponents, talking stats and strategy. It’s a battle of blood, sweat and tears, and for so many, there’s nothing more exciting…well, aside from the Super Bowl commercials.
The commercials that air during the big game often get as much hype as the game itself. Not just because of the staggering amount that they cost to run — this year, NBC is selling 30-second spots for a record $4.5 million each — but because they are, for the most part, the most hilarious and most memorable advertisements we see all year. And the truth is, they need to be.
The Super Bowl is the kingpin of broadcast advertising. It is the most-watched television program of the year. In fact, Super Bowl XLVIII was the most-watched show in human history with 111.5 million viewers. So if advertisers don’t bring their a-game to the big game, they may as well be flushing their money right down the toilet.
So far NBC has reportedly sold roughly 90% of the ad time available during the Super Bowl. Of that 90%, you can expect to see fewer automobile advertisements, along with a decrease in ads for technology hardware and health snacks. What you will see, however, are more advertisements for movies, beer, soft drinks, fast food and insurance.
There’s no doubt that the Super Bowl spotlight makes an impression, but the cost of getting that impression has many looking for other avenues, as they very well should.
Sports are best watched live. That’s the beauty of streaming from a mobile device — fans can watch the game in real time from wherever they are. And one of the most popular times to tune in from a mobile device? No, not the Super Bowl, but NFL playoffs.
During playoff season, more fans are using their mobile devices to watch games. And they’re just as engaged as consumers are during the big game.
So what kinds of advertisements work best during playoffs?
Just as week 20 matched the final four teams last season to determine who would go to the Super Bowl, last year we noted in a special report that four categories of advertisers vie for sports fans’ attention with mobile advertising impressions: consumer electronics, energy producers, food (fast food) and beverages, and communications services. And the top advertiser by engagement last year was fast food sandwich delivery companies.
On top of that, it was just revealed that ESPN, Yahoo, CBS Sports and Sports Illustrated have all seen huge surges in mobile football viewing. Fox Sports Digital just told Adweek that it experienced a 90% jump in mobile traffic last month compared to October 2013.
So between the lower cost, the consumer base and the overall effectiveness of mobile ads, advertisers may start to reconsider their strategy when it comes to when and where they air their commercials…or at least, how much they are spending.
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