I may be one of the few Americans not watching the Super Bowl right now, but that doesn’t mean I’m not interested in it. Last year’s Super Bowl garnered 106.5 million U.S. viewers, making it the most-watched TV program in U.S. history. This year’s game — shown on all four broadcast networks — will undoubtedly get similar numbers when Nielsen announces results tomorrow. And that doesn’t count a few million more people watching around the world.
To reach that audience, companies paid as much as $3 million for a 30 sec. spot. They are spending millions to produce each of those spots, betting (correctly) that few people are going to fast-forward through a live events featuring the best ads of the year.
1) Live events, particularly sports, are going to continue to command huge ad premiums because they are the one relatively sure way to neutralize DVRs.
2) If you create an ad people actually enjoy watching, they’ll actually watch it. Who knew?