Big Time SuperBowl Ads: Are They Really Worth It?

By now, virtually everyone in America watches the SuperBowl. Some people are die-hard football fans, some just tune in for the big game, and some even just want to watch the best advertisement lineup of the year. That’s right, those pesky advertisements that we now have DVRs and other ways of bypassing are actually intriguing and worth watching during the SuperBowl. But the question is: are businesses really benefiting from the massive amounts they pay for the quick 30 second spots? As we learned early on in the semester, value = benefits – costs. Only this time instead of thinking of it from a consumer’s perspective, we’re thinking about it from the side of big business.

A quick google search shows that ad spots during the big game this year cost about $4 million. This guarantees that local “mom and pop” stores have absolutely no chance of airing anything, so the only potential advertisers are huge companies that are already known by close to, if not, 100% of their target markets. So why pay $4 million for a 30 second tv spot that probably has no chance of increasing sales or brand awareness? As one insightful student pointed out during class (forgive me for not remembering his name), companies like Coke and Budweiser put out ads to help with their corporate sales instead of attracting the average consumer. This was an excellent point, but even considering that; are they really going to benefit more than $4 million from it? I guess the only people that will really have a definitive answer to the question are those in the boardroom that continue to shell out the big bucks, but it’s just a little food for thought that’s always made me wonder.

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