The Super Bowl is an unofficial national holiday affectionately entitled “Super Sunday.”
It is also the biggest food production day in the foodstuff retail business. One in every six televisions is bought just months prior to the game. Snack companies increase production of potato and tortilla chips in anticipation of higher sales. Pizza delivery companies hire more drivers and sell more pies than at any other time of the year. The big game sends sales of beer, soda, chips and salsa through the roof.
“Super Sunday” is the third largest alcohol consumption celebration behind New Year’s Eve and St. Patrick’s Day. One in four workers will participate in a game pool while weddings are non-existent.
The game was created from the merger negotiations between the established National Football League (NFL) and the younger American Football League (AFL). Both leagues had their own championship games and league champions, but this game was designed to pit league champs against each other.
The first two games were called the “AFL-NFL World Championship Game.” Lamar Hunt, owner of the AFL’s Kansas City Chiefs, coined the term “Super Bowl” inadvertently at a committee meeting. Hunt had thought of the name while watching his children play with the Wham-O toy “Super Ball.” Because of college football, all of the post-season games were labeled a “bowl” game, so for the NFL to follow suit with something similar was normal.
The commissioner of the NFL, Pete Rozelle, didn’t like the term “super” thinking it had no sophistication and was simply an ordinary term.
Pro football beat writers, commentators and even players began using the term Super Bowl and whether or not Rozelle thought the moniker was grammatically correct or not, the name stuck. Rozelle’s suggestion for the game’s title? “The Big One.”
The Super Bowl decides the champion of the NFL, and also the champions of the advertising universe. Inasmuch as the Super Bowl has created a mass gathering either in sports bars or at household gatherings, this splendid festival generates just as much interest in the commercials as it does the actual game itself.
Advertisers’ Super Bowl
Basically, the Super Bowl is the most influential amphitheater in the world of TV advertising. In the exosphere of advertising it is viewed as judgment day. Brand new ad campaigns often begin their kickoff during the game.
The three networks that carry the NFL broadcasts - CBS, FOX and NBC - alternate as host of the Super Bowl each year. FOX will broadcast Super Bowl LVII this year and has announced the cost for each 30-second spot is a record $7 million. The beer industry will be the most prevalent advertisers.
The Super Bowl stage is important to advertisers. It is viewed as the foremost program to create product awareness, speed up sales of a service or product, unveil big news, or to simply remind folks that their product is still around.
What is unusual about the Super Bowl broadcast is that it was created on the premise that the primary audience would be watching the game on television instead of live.
Commercial demand for this year’s Super Bowl was at an all-time high and sold out back in October. Some sources have suggested that FOX possibly sold out the spots too quickly and may have been able to push the limits on the price tag.
In 2022, a 30-second spot netted $6.5 million. With the high cost, viewers are guaranteed that the commercials will be creative and interesting.
Last year, over 112.3 million viewers were estimated to have watched the Super Bowl on NBC.
The very first “AFL-NFL World Championship Game”, later re-named “Super Bowl I”, was played in January of 1967 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in California The game pitted the NFL Champion Green Bay Packers against the AFL Champion Chiefs.
The competition was attended by 63,036 fans with more than 32,000 empty seats despite tickets priced at only $12. At that time, it was not customary for fans to travel to a neutral site for a game.
NBC had the AFL rights while CBS was the NFL’s lone carrier. Both networks wanted exclusive rights to broadcast the game, but it was decided to have both cover the contest. Each network furiously promoted the game in the weeks leading up to the game in order to outdo the other for future clients.
CBS charged $42,500 for each 60-second spot whereas NBC netted $37,500 per ad. Advertisers were Dodge, RCA, Haggar, Ford, McDonald’s, Goodyear Tires, American Airlines, U. S. Savings Bonds and several cigarette brands: Salem, Tareyton, Winston and Lark.
This Year’s Advertisers
Everyone expects the beverage companies to advertise at the Super Bowl and this year is no exception. Typically, the retail market is a weak sale for Super Bowl advertisers who are usually absent from the lineup.
Advertisers this year include Rakuten, Miller Lite, Coors Light, DraftKings, Sam Adams, Planters, Squarespace, Busch Beer, workday, Budweiser, Michelob Ultra, Heineken, FanDuel, Doritos, Downy, Experian, Apple TV, PopCorners, and M&M’s.