Cryptocurrency Groups Buy Top Super Bowl Ads

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Advertisers paid up to $7 million for 30 seconds of television time during the Super Bowl, the final of the American football championship, and cryptocurrency platforms join the usual parade of beer and coffee companies. cars sending messages to American homes.

Media buyers rushed to reserve slots for the Los Angeles Rams’ home game against the Cincinnati Bengals — in contrast to a dismal event last year when fans were warned not to party over coronavirus fears. and viewership dropped to the lowest volume since 2007.

The marketing onslaught during the United States soccer championship final will feature commercials from Crypto.com, Coinbase and FTX for the first time, giving them the opportunity to promote crypto-businesses among the sizable percentage of the American population expected to tune in to the match.

At the same time, several traditional advertisers will be back — including Budweiser beer, which last year avoided running a commercial during the game for the first time since 1983 and donated to an educational vaccination initiative.

The amount broadcaster NBC said some companies paid for a 30-second commercial was 25% higher than the average of $5.6 million last year, according to researchers at Kantar.

“Things in short supply naturally become more expensive,” said Mark Read, chief executive of WPP, the world’s largest advertising company. “It’s a reflection of customers trying to build brands: it’s very difficult to reach the mass.”

The extravagant spending is the latest sign that marketers are confident the economic recovery from the pandemic will be lasting. She is especially welcome to NBC, as the network attracted a historically low number of viewers to the Winter Olympics in Beijing.

NBC said it expects Sunday to be “the highest-grossing day in the history of sports media in the United States”, generating at least $500 million in ad sales combined across the two. events.

More than 30 advertisers with commercials at this Super Bowl — about two in five — did not participate last year.

Among the newcomers is the FTX cryptocurrency exchange. Its US president, Brett Harrison, said the announcements were part of the company’s strategy to make digital currencies “universally interesting”.

Crypto enthusiasts “represent only a small demographic compared to the total base of potential users,” he said. FTX’s plans include not only a one-minute commercial, but also free cryptocurrency distribution coinciding with the commercial.

Super Bowl slots are among the most aggressive examples to date of the industry’s growing marketing power, and threaten to intensify calls for tighter regulation on how platforms normalize this commerce among users on a day-to-day basis.

Crypto.com acquired the naming rights to another stadium in Los Angeles and ran ads during the National Football League season that feature Matt Damon proclaiming that “fortune favors the brave”.

The demand for advertising from that industry at the Super Bowl helped offset the relative weakness of companies in others, such as travel, whose recovery is hampered by the ongoing pandemic.

TV ads have become more expensive despite a long downward trend in viewing. The number of 18-24 year olds tuning in to the show has dropped for nine straight years, according to Sports Media Watch.

But in an era of targeted digital messaging, advertising executives said new brands and mainstream customers alike are prepared to pay for a unique opportunity to reach so many viewers.

Super Bowl audiences have a highly unusual level of engagement with ads, an American cultural phenomenon that to some is of greater interest than the game itself. More than four in five respondents to a Morning Consult survey published this week said they pay “a lot” or “some” attention to commercials.

Mike Law, chief executive of Carat US, one of the world’s biggest media buyers and part of Japan’s Dentsu, said, “There’s possibly no other place to get so many people at any given time with the attention you get on screen.”

He added: “But that comes at a very high price, and I think a lot of pressure to deliver.”

Brands that misinterpret the mood risk a public backlash, but those that find the right formula are rewarded with widespread recognition. Morning Consult found that Budweiser, known for its timeless Clydesdale horses as well as past hits including “Whassup”, had created the most memorable ads over the years.

After a cautious tone about the game last year, which took place not only in the midst of the pandemic but also after the attack on the US Capitol, this time the commercials will be less direct.

“Nothing too heavy,” was how Rob Reilly, WPP’s creative director, summed up the approach taken by most advertisers. “People are wanting to laugh.”

Amazon’s spot is a self-parody, featuring his assistant Alexa who has developed the power to read minds, while General Motors re-introduces Austin Powers’ Evil Dr. as director of the car company.

“This year should be decidedly fun and comical,” said Jason Harris, co-founder of creative advertising agency Mekanism. “After two years of what we’ve been through, you want to make people laugh.”

Translated by Luiz Roberto M. Gonçalves

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