Before I get into the story, I still can't believe that is the logo for Super Bowl XLIII. It's just boring and looks like the Patriots logo to me. Anywho, NBC isn't having nearly the trouble selling ads for the Super Bowl that it was for the Olympics. In fact at the start of the NFL Season they only really have about 10 of the 67 spots left. Via John Ourand at Sports Business Daily....
The strong ad sales market surrounding February’s game underscores the strength that big events like the Super Bowl have, even in a down economy. “We see the end zone right now,” Winter said.That's just wild, but it seems to make sense. With the economy as low as it's been in quite some time people are trying every way they can think of to put their money into sure things, and the Super Bowl is certainly one of those sure things. The majority of large businesses use the "shotgun approach" to marketing, which is to get your message out through many avenues as to as many people you can, but saving up for a huge event like the SB or American Idol might become more of the norm.
NBC’s enviable ad sales position also marks resurgence of an event that had become a tough sell for networks in fall of ‘05 and ‘06. Last year’s game on Fox seemed to re-energize the Super Bowl, which stood out for its numbers (a 43.1 rating) and buzz factor (with the Patriots vying for an undefeated season against the big-market Giants). Coming off an Olympics ad sales effort that saw NBC sell more than $1B, the Super Bowl is another good news story for the network, and shows that big sports events are not being affected by the overall sluggish economy.
NBC’s $3M rate card marks an unprecedented 11% increase from the $2.7M rate card Fox used for this year’s game. Fox set the market at the end of last year, when it ended up getting around $3M for a couple of late-breaking 30-second spots. The $3M rate usually is paid by advertisers that do not buy spots during the season. “I’d be embarrassed to tell anyone that I paid that much for a commercial,” said one ad buyer, who asked not to be identified because he plans to buy at least one spot.
NBC Has Already Sold 85% Of Ad Inventory For Super Bowl XLIII (Sports Business Daily - $)