Between watching the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots clash for the Lombardi Trophy in Super Bowl 52 — the biggest prize in all of sports — and guzzling down more than the recommended dietary intake of Bud Light without any judgment, a number of watch party participants will not be tuning out the commercial breaks between the action.
The Super Bowl, which draws eyeballs from pigskin fanatics, casual viewers and those who just want to hang out with friends, allows for opportunities for advertising agencies to showcase their funniest, most heart-warming, or most peculiar 30 seconds highlighting their product. There were more than 111 million people who tuned for the Patriots comeback over the Atlanta Falcons in last year’s Super Bowl and over $500 million is projected to be spent on advertising for Sunday’s showdown.
Albuquerque-based advertising agency Esparza will not have a commercial during the Super Bowl 52 showcase, but spoke to what’s to come and the process of turning a pitch into a big-time audience viewership. A successful commercial must be relevant to the viewer, hit the target audience, and must showcase the benefits, according to Eve Wakeland, Esparza’s director of accounts. Esparza monitors social media to gauge what people are talking about.
"I believe that really the best work is something that’s researched and looked at from all aspects," Wakeland said. "Getting any foundational information (companies) already have, whether it’s about their consumers or the platform that they’re looking on … from there, it’s always a collaborative process between the agency and the client."
Two-thirds of Business First’s readers will be watching, according to the recent Business Pulse survey, with 9 percent of having a heightened focus on the show after Justin Timberlake makes his return to the center stage with his first halftime performance since the infamous "wardrobe malfunction" moment with Janet Jackson.
The commercials have to resonate, since it will cost $5 million for 30 seconds of airtime during the game on NBC, according to an article from Sports Illustrated. For some companies, $5 million is a cost where they can afford to take chances. For others, it’s a Hail Mary because a lot more rides on how well the 30 seconds are maximized. A successful display could have those companies basking in glory, much like a scoring the game-winning touchdown or gamblers correctly betting the over/under on the length of Pink’s national anthem.
"E-Trade, GoDaddy, those are companies who, when they first bought Super Bowl commercials, were small companies … and they took a chance and it worked," Wakeland said. "There definitely have been others who have failed."
After a number of ads from last year’s Super Bowl had political undertones and the National Football League getting criticized by President Donald Trump during the regular season for not forcing players to stand for the national anthem, Wakeland predicts there will be a different spirit this year.
"Most of them are going to be focused on having a little bit of fun, talking about their philanthropic side, there’s some focus on [artificial intelligence]," she said. "It seems to be a lot of (commercials) about entertainment and making people feel good."
New Mexico’s Largest Advertising Firms
Ranked by 2016 advertising billings
Rank Business name 2016 advertising billings 1 Kilmer Kilmer Marshall Duran (K2MD) $8.4 million 2 3 Advertising $4.89 million 3 Edit House Productions LLC / Ad House Advertising $2.77 million View This List