Nov 25, 2019

Fox Sports sells out Super Bowl ad inventory early

Ad data: SQAD; Viewership data: Nielsen; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Fox Sports has sold all of its advertising inventory for Super Bowl LIV, the company has confirmed to Axios. It's sold a total of 77 spots, with the most expensive 30-second spot costing $5.6 million.

Why it matters: The Super Bowl is one of the most visible advertising opportunities in America, next to the Olympics. As more television viewing moves to on-demand streaming, there are fewer big opportunities for advertisers to reach consumers live.

Be smart: Super Bowl ads have generally gotten more expensive over the past few years, despite the fact that Super Bowl viewership on traditional television has waned. Streaming options and social media are likely to have impacted live TV viewership.

By the numbers: The average rate for a 30-second Super Bowl in-game ad has increased by nearly 100% over the past decade.

  • Last year, reports suggested that CBS was selling some 30-second Super Bowl spots for around $5.2 million.
  • Variety's Brian Steinberg reports that Fox is seeking "between $2 million and $3 million for the most expensive advertising slots in its pre- and post-game coverage."

The big picture: This year marks the first time in half a decade "that the network showing the big game hasn’t had to go down to the wire to dispense with its high-priced ad slots," per Steinberg.

The bottom line: Live TV audiences are becoming more scarce, which means advertisers are willing to pay more to reach those viewers.

Go deeper: Pricing plateaus for Super Bowl ads

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Schedule: Full college football bowl game slate

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow. Photo: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The argument against bowl games is that they are relatively meaningless exhibition games designed to make money — mostly for Disney, which not only broadcasts but actually owns many of them.

Yes, but: "There's something nostalgic and fun about sitting down around the holidays and binge-watching football games between obscure teams you wouldn't have watched otherwise," writes FiveThirtyEight's Neil Paine.

Go deeperArrowDec 9, 2019

Trump, the marketer in chief

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Impeachment is bringing out President Trump's instincts as marketer in chief, as he seeks to turn a perilous, shame-inducing inquiry into an aggressive fundraising and mobilization tool.

Why it matters: Democrats competing for the chance to challenge Trump in the general election are getting a preview of how he may seek to upend and monetize their arguments against him.

Go deeperArrowDec 2, 2019

Michael Bloomberg reportedly reserves biggest campaign TV ad buy in history

Michael Bloomberg prepares to speak at the Christian Cultural Center in New York. Photo: Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Former New York City mayor and billionaire Michael Bloomberg announced a $31 million TV ad campaign on Friday in several key primary states ahead of an anticipated announcement to enter the 2020 Democratic primary race for president, NBC News reports, citing Advertising Analytics.

Why it matters: The reported figure would be the single biggest ad buy in American campaign history, with Barack Obama holding the previous record at $30 million in 2012. Bloomberg's first ad spend comes as he has filed paperwork to jump into the race, but his campaign team says he has not made a final decision.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Nov 22, 2019