Survey Shows Super Spending for Super Bowl Sunday

Spending by consumers and advertisers for Super Bowl XLVII is hitting record highs this year. You probably don’t have millions for a big-game TV spot, but there’s a lesson for associations behind the big money.

Consumers are gearing up to spend more this Super Bowl season, according to a recent survey by the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association (RAMA), a division of the National Retail Federation (NFR). More than 179 million people will watch the big game, the most in the survey’s nine-year history. Average spending per consumer is also expected to increase to $68.54, up from $63.87 in 2012.

The business of Super Bowl advertising seems to have gotten so big that companies are looking for ways to capitalize on what they know to be a huge audience.

Based on those numbers, total consumer spending is predicted to reach nearly $12.3 billion—another all-time high.

“This time of year, before the Super Bowl, is a very big time for both consumers and retailers,” said Kathy Grannis, senior director of media relations for NRF. “Retailers have, in recent years, really amped up their promotions, knowing that there are so many people who have started celebrating the Super Bowl.”

The cost to reach those consumers has hit record highs as well, according to estimates by advertising executives. CBS, the home of Super Bowl XLVII, sold 30-second commercial spots for an average of $3.8 million this year, topping the previous record of $3.5 million set by NBC last year.

“The business of Super Bowl advertising seems to have gotten so big that companies are looking for ways to capitalize on what they know to be a huge audience,” said Grannis. “This year in particular we have two very big teams from two very big cities. So as companies start considering what they stand to gain from their advertising, and they want to get the most bang for their buck.”

To do so, companies have started their ad campaigns well in advance of game day. And they’re relying on new channels to amplify their TV spots.

“In recent years Twitter and social media especially have played a tremendous role in bringing together everyday brands with everyday consumers,” Grannis said. “That type of interaction really lets people be a part of the experience in a different way. Also, companies are bringing in the audience through the use of contests like Doritos—this year the hype has grown so much around their contest. If any company can continue to capitalize on getting the attention of their audience, it’s certainly a win.”

The lesson for associations in all of this? (Hint: It’s not that spending millions for a 30-second TV spot is the best way to get your message across.)

“There’s no question that consumers today want quick, but they also want entertaining and they want accessible,” Grannis said. “One of the most important things for any group to remember is that mobile brings all of that together. You definitely have to be strategic, though, and that goes for any industry. Everybody has a different group of consumers, and you really have to know how to tackle your audience.”


Rob Stott

By Rob Stott

Rob Stott is a contributing editor for Associations Now. MORE

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