• NBC Testing Super Bowl Ad Rates of $3.5M Per 30-Second Spot

    A report this week in AdAge indicated that NBC, which has the broadcast rights to next year's Super Bowl XLVI, is testing advertiser reaction to a rates of up to $3.5 million per certain 30-second ads. This would be a bump from this past year's rates of $2.8-$3.0 million and would easily be the most expensive ad time in history. However, the potential increase was not only predictable, I think it's actually just the start of a significant run up yet to come.

    Why? Because online video and social media have completely redefined the value of Super Bowl advertising. It wasn't that long ago when, for a Super Bowl advertiser's buy, all they got was the 30 seconds of on-air viewing, and some Monday morning water-cooler chitchat. Flash forward to this year's game and it's evident that the on-air spot is just one (albeit crucial) aspect of an overall brand campaign. According to new data from Visible Measures this week, post-game ad playback has already topped 230 million views and is on track to exceed 2010 and 2009 Super Bowl online ad viewing combined.

    Consider Volkswagen's "The Force" ad, which has generated 36 million views alone. If every one of the 111 million people who watched the game live had actually seen the ad when it aired (which is unlikely of course given bathroom breaks, etc.), this would represent a 32% viewership lift. But people who proactively go to view the ad online are certainly more engaged than those who caught it on-air in a typical multi-spot pod. So the value extends to more than just pure audience lift. Now granted, VW's is the top-viewed ad online, but even the #10-rated ad, from Doritos, has already gained over 5 million views. Bottom line: NBC and future Super Bowl rights-holders have a much stronger value proposition to brands. Inevitably that means rates are going up.