The mixture of sports and politics could get a little closer in February provided that President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign buys a Super Bowl ad. In his weekly sports media newsletter, Sports Business Journal’s John Ourand cites sources as saying that the Trump campaign has agreed “on the broad terms” in buying an ad on Super Bowl LIV which would air on Fox. The network is selling ads for as much as $5.6 million for a 30-second spot, but it’s not known if the Trump campaign is willing to pay that high price tag.
Here’s more from Ourand:
“It appears likely that President Trump’s re-election campaign will buy an ad during February’s Super Bowl telecast, marking what would be the first time in recent memory that a national election ad will be part of the big game’s telecast. Multiple sources say the president’s team has agreed on the broad terms for buying an ad, which Fox is selling for as much as a record $5.6 million per 30-second spot. It is not known how much Fox has agreed to price the ad spot for the Trump campaign. No contract is signed yet, and the campaign still could opt out of placing a high-priced ad during the game, which is one day before the Iowa caucuses.”
If the ad does come to fruition, it would fit into the President’s recent strategy of appearing at high-profile sporting events. In October, Trump attended the World Series in Washington and a UFC event in New York, and he attended the LSU-Alabama game earlier this month.
This will not mark the first time that Trump and his team have bought time during a national sports broadcast. Last year, Trump ran a campaign ad during NBC’s Sunday Night Football ahead of the mid-term elections, a decision which the Peacock later regretted. This year, Trump’s campaign has purchased spots on Game 7 of the World Series and on the NFL on Fox.
When the campaign season swings into high gear further into 2020, expect to see even more political ads. When Sinclair’s purchase of the Fox regional sports networks is finalized, the company plans to expand political advertising, hoping to gain a financial windfall from various national and local candidates.
According to Ourand, ad buyers cannot remember the last time a presidential candidate purchased a national Super Bowl ad. Normally, candidates would buy local spots going into a primary or caucus. No candidate advertised on CBS’ Super Bowl 50 telecast in 2016. And with the Super Bowl traditionally garnering the largest television audience, Trump is hoping to reach a massive amount of eyeballs.