March 25, 2023


The Super Bowl, the most watched televised sports event, is about more than just the game.

Though many of the viewers watch for the love of the sport, quite a few tune in for the entertainment aspect of the annual event.

The halftime show is arguably one of the most anticipated concerts of the year. It is often filled with firework displays and a celebrity musical performance. Viewership actually increases at halftime.

Last year, according to CNN, the peak viewership of Super Bowl 50 was from 8:30 to 9 p.m., the time in which the halftime show took place. How many viewers were watching during this peak time – 115.5 million.

The remainder of Super Bowl 50 had 111.9 million viewers.

That number does not include the number of people in attendance at every Super Bowl viewing party across the world or the number of people streaming the event from a mobile device. CBS online streaming had 1.4 million views per minute last year as well.

In 2015, more than 55 per cent of the Canadian population tuned into CTV or RDS through Bell Media to watch the New England Patriots battle the Seattle Seahawks at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

With an audience this large, commercial advertisement space during the game comes with a hefty price tag.

For a 30-second ad aired during this year’s Super Bowl, companies shelled out around $5 million for the purpose of promoting their product to the millions of viewers. This is an all-time high for advertising during the Super Bowl’s 51 years.

That is $160,000 per second, yet in 1967, during the first Super Bowl, companies were paying an average of $133,000 per second.

Is spending this amount of money on a short ad worth it for the participating companies?

“I would say it’s worth it because a lot of people watch it. It’s their chance to get their brand out there,” said Alannah Crocker, a Conestoga third-year financial planning student.

Third-year electrical engineering student, Malek Terry, said, “Yes, for sure it’s worth all of that money. A lot of people are going to watch it.”

Jessy Russell, a third-year tool and dye making student, said, “I don’t think it is worth it. I feel like if you are going to buy the product or see the movie that the ad is for then you already have plans to see that movie or to buy that product.

These advertisements often do not just air during the allotted time during the game. Shortly after first airing, they are uploaded to the Internet, YouTube and Facebook, to be viewed millions of more times. They are also often featured on the morning news the following day when the anchors discuss which commercials were the best and which fell below the mark.

“I do think it is worth it, especially for the YouTube ads,” said Wes Thompson, a third-year software engineering technician student. “Everyone will go on and watch them on YouTube, even if they did not watch the game. It seems to me that ads work.”

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