Super Bowl Advertising III: Stay on Sidelines or Get in Game?

A weak economy has forced many Super Bowl advertisers to re-evaluate their participation in the big game. Actually, review of committing to being a Super Bowl advertising has been ongoing for many advertisers as the price for a 30-second spot has risen 50% since 2002. This year's going rate of $3 million serves as a reason for advertisers to scrutinize whether the money invested on the air time, producing a commercial, and other marketing spending in support of their Super Bowl ad is worth it. Two veteran advertisers, GM and FedEx, concluded the answer is "no" and will not be advertising during the Super Bowl. Three rookies join the commercial lineup: General Electric, Denny's, and Pedigree.

The question of whether to commit $3 million-plus to Super Bowl marketing is the same question a marketer asks when considering a $300 ad in the local newspaper: can a return on investment be attained that justifies spending the money? An even more important question to ask is: what is the ad supposed to accomplish? Is it reasonable to expect sales will increase? Will we get more telephone calls or web site hits from people wanting to know more about our business? Will awareness for our company or brand increase, which could lead to increased sales?

Being a Super Bowl advertiser can be a badge of honor for a marketer, albeit a very expensive badge! Being a part of the game is not the objective to attain; it is crucial that any marketing spend have an outcome that will advance a brand in some way.

Link: Advertising Age - "Rookies Eager to Play in Super Bowl"