Another year, another Super Bowl commercial cost uptick.
In what has become as much of an annual tradition as the Super Bowl itself, the network broadcasting the big game is looking for a lot more money for commercial space than before. According to Variety, NBC is telling advertisers that they’re asking $6 million for a 30-second spot during Super Bowl LVI, which is set for Feb. 13, 2022, in Inglewood, CA.
To be fair, the $6 million price tag comes after a year when CBS kept its commercial rates fairly flat. Thanks to the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic and how it affected viewer habits, the network didn’t want to scare off already-skittish advertisers and set a price around $5.5 million for Super Bowl LV, which was relatively level with 2019’s game. That year, the fact that Fox had no problem selling out their inventory for the game means they might have left money on the table. However, as we all know, 2020/2021 was a weird one.
The fact that ratings for the Super Bowl are on the decline in recent years doesn’t seem to be scaring off advertisers either. You’re still looking at an audience that is close to 100 million strong, plus the digital opportunities and PR boost that comes with having an ad in the Super Bowl make it a hard opportunity to walk away from (if you have the money). It’s fairly easy to justify the spend when you consider all of the earned media exposure that comes along with the in-game experience.
So strong is NBC’s position that, per Variety, they’re also requiring potential sponsors to buy “an equal amount of ad inventory in its 2022 broadcast of the Beijing Winter Olympics” in order to guarantee prominent placement in the Super Bowl. Though, that likely speaks more to the network’s concerns about the value of the Winter Olympics, which NBC is heavily invested in for the foreseeable future. Not that they seem to be too worried about the upcoming Tokyo games.