Feb 4, 2022 - Sports

Super Bowl ads sell out at record high prices

Illustration of a television with football goal posts for antenna

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Ads for this year's Super Bowl are sold out, according to NBC, which will broadcast the game alongside its Olympics coverage on Feb 13. Some 30-second spots sold for a record $7 million.

Why it matters: The Super Bowl is one of the few major TV events that can still draw a huge audience, making advertising around the event very valuable.

  • Given how well NFL games rated throughout the regular season, sports executives anticipate that this year's Super Bowl will rate much higher than last year's, which saw viewership fall to a 10-year TV low.
  • Viewership for the NFL's 2021 regular season was up 10% from 2020, its highest-rated season average since 2015, per Nielsen ratings.

The big picture: Ads for Super Bowl LVI are sold out of every in-game unit across NBC, Telemundo and all digital platforms, including Peacock, per NBC. The company said there are a handful of pre-game spots still open.

  • For the first time, Telemundo will broadcast the game, making it the first-ever Spanish-language broadcast network to air the Super Bowl. 
  • All in-game advertisers will run across the Telemundo telecast as well as NBC Sports streaming assets, including Peacock.

Be smart: The average Super Bowl ad this year is reportedly around $6 million for a 30-second spot, representing a big jump from last year's Super Bowl, in which 30-second spots averaged around $5.5 million.

  • NBC credits the jump with increased interest from new advertisers, who represent around 40% of the total Super Bowl ads this year, per NBC. There are more than 30 new advertisers in this year’s Super Bowl compared to last year's event.

What to watch: NBC says that there's been a growth in ads across the auto, tech, entertainment, travel and health and wellness sectors.

Go deeper: The NFL has an extraordinary grip on America's media diet

Disclosure: NBC is an investor in Axios and Satpal Brainch, chief commercial officer of NBCU News Group, is a member of the Axios board. In addition, Telemundo and Axios jointly produce the Axios Latino newsletter.

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