Sunday, February 3, 2008

2-3-08: Le Super Bowl

If there's one thing about the Super Bowl that separates us from the animals, it's the commercials. Though, the funny thing about that is how popular commercials featuring animals have been in the past. Remember that e-Trade commercial several years back with the monkey just hopping around? Brilliant.

The commercials are so clever nowadays that they've formed their own economy. It's amazing. A 30-second spot costs a minimum of $2.7 million. But the game is so highly rated that many companies see it as worthwhile.

But what causes these high ratings? Well, it has to be the game. But that can't necessarily be it. They've had small market teams play in recent games, and the ratings didn't exactly plummet those years. I'm sure a lot of people watched the game in those cities, but what about the games between two east coast or two west coast teams? An entire coast is unrepresented. How can so many people watch the game?

I would contest that it's the positive feedback of the commercials. Several years ago, some companies realized that making really clever commercials and showing them at the Super Bowl was a good business move. So, more companies tried to do it, driving up demand. Prices then went up. Companies realized that it's not worth it unless they spend more money to look better than the other companies in order to stand out. Then, people started to hear about how much these commercials cost, and began watching the game just for the commercials. It's not only the most-watched sports event of the year, it's the only 3-hour block on television where people watch for the commercials. And, unless the quality starts to go down significantly for multiple years, the cost to broadcast will continue to skyrocket. And... more people will watch.

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