'More storytelling ads' as Superbowl is set to be biggest moneymaker yet

Excitement is cranking up in the US for the Superbowl on February 5. There will 35 minutes of ads around the game, all spots are sold and look out for l-o-n-g-e-r commercials: "a return to storytelling", as Ad Age puts it.

The Force ad above set the pace last year when it went on to be chosen by Adweek as America's best commercial of 2011 .

Average cost of a 30-second Superbowl commercial this year is $3.5 million with one late arrival paying $4 million. Total revenue is expected to be 17 per cent up on last year .

Seth Winter, NBC sports vice-president of marketing , told Adweek that cars are again the dominant category: even more so than last year when 20 car ads ran.

“I do believe the auto category will prove to be even more prolific this year,” Winter said. “We’re also seeing more long-form in-game advertising than ever before ”

General Motors is down for five spots. Hyundai is there and Volkswagen will air a 60-second spot in the third quarter.

A package buy across the Super Bowl and the 2012 London Summer Olympics is likely to earn a client favourable rates, said AdAge.

Also advertising : Anheuser-Busch, whose Bud Light is the official beer of the NFL. You will see Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Mars M&Ms, Best Buy, CareerBuilder and GoDaddy.com.

Movies will also be plugged. Best guesses: Joss Weldon’s The Avengers , The Amazing Spider-Man and The Dark Knight Rises.

Last year’s Super Bowl was the most-watched broadcast in TV history, as the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers battled in front of 111 million viewers.

FOOTNOTE: in the first Super Bowl on Jan. 15, 1967, advertisers paid NBC $37,500 per 30-second spot and averaged 24.4 million viewers

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