As we approach another NCAA Tournament, the team of CBS/Turner is encouraged by the sign that the ads for the 67 games are just about sold. Based on last year’s tournament that averaged 10.5 million viewers per game on the four networks, CBS/TBS/TNT/truTV, that comprise the broadcast consortium, advertisers have flocked to buy time on both the linear television telecasts as well as the online webcasts.
Advertising Age’s Anthony Crupi writes that a 30 second ad on the National Championship game on CBS will cost marketers a cool $1.5 million. And while that pales at the $4.5 million asking price for Super Bowl XLIX on NBC, CBS is not pleading poverty by any means. By comparison, a 30 second spot for the 2014 NBA Finals on ABC cost $520,000.
With this being the second year for the Final Four localized Teamcasts on TNT and truTV, Turner expects to promote the concept even more than last year. According to Ad Age, the Teamcast on TNT for Kentucky-Wisconsin game had 26% of the overall combined audience. With those types of numbers, advertisers can expect an extra bang for their bucks knowing that they can target a specific audience.
Another factor in the hot ad market for the NCAA Tournament is no Winter Olympics this year. Last year, the Sochi Games took some advertising revenue away from college basketball, but without that programming this year, companies know they don’t have hold their dollars and pick which winter event would be a better fit.
So we can expect the usual advertisers like Buffalo Wild Wings, Capital One, Coke, Northwestern Mutual and others.
CBS and Turner enter the 2015 NCAA Tournament rather bullish and knowing that most of their ad availabilities are sold.