Eagles vs. Patriots vs. Advertising

Fair warning: Here comes football post #2 for the week. However, it is Super Bowl weekend, so I’m willing to indulge myself if you are. All good? Fabulous. Let’s look at the other side of America’s biggest sporting event.

When I invited my non-sports friends to my Super Bowl party this year, I did it out of courtesy. They’d rather not sit through what’s likely to be four hours of New England slogging its way to another championship and I didn’t really expect them to want to come. (DISCLAIMER: I’m no prophet and I likely just jinxed Bill Belichick out of his sixth ring with that statement.)

To my surprise, they jumped at the opportunity. However, it didn’t take long for me to figure out their motive: the commercials. More and more, advertising is coming to dominate the Super Bowl. Media outlets are compiling “rankings” of the best Super Bowl promos each year. Companies invest exorbitant sums of money in securing airtime and race to outdo each other in terms of absurdity, hoping to go viral. I overheard a guy in my lecture talking about his plans to fast forward through the game and only watch the commercials.

Now, to me, it seems ludicrous to watch two hours’ worth of commercials. Aren’t we inundated with enough marketing throughout the day? But, the American advertising juggernaut charges forward and, for the most part, we eagerly rise to meet it. We’ve bought in whole-heartedly to idea of the Super Bowl promo. In fact, ad costs and their subsequent budgets have risen by 12,000% since the 60s. Twelve-thousand percent. Check it out:

So, why will you be tuning in on Sunday night? Hoping for an Eagles upset? Rooting for Team Capitalism?

Even if you’re not planning to watch Super Bowl LII, don’t worry–you’ll be hearing all about the best (and worst) commercials for quite some time after.

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