The Super Bowl is one of the biggest events in the world of sports, attracting millions of viewers and generating billions of dollars in revenue. One of the key components of the Super Bowl experience is the advertising. Every year, companies spend millions of dollars to secure a coveted spot during the Super Bowl broadcast, hoping to reach a massive audience and make an impact with their message. But what if instead of spending money on Super Bowl ads, companies decided to donate that money to charitable nonprofit organizations instead? The positive impact that would be made in the world would be significant and far-reaching.
Super Bowl 2022 Advertising Stats
Let’s just take a moment to talk about the stats of Super Bowl advertising. According to Marketing Drive, in 2022, 36 million households (equating to an estimated 99 to 100 million people) tuned in to watch the Super Bowl. The cost of a 30 second commercial in 2022 was $6.5 million and was an 18% increase year-over-year (It was also the single largest YOY increase in the past 15 years). 56 unique advertisers had 68 ads shown during 44 minutes of national advertising airtime. It is estimated Super Bowl LV generated $434.5 million of in-game ad revenue. It is important to note that the funds generated through Super Bowl advertising is paid to the broadcaster and not the NFL.
Super Bowl Advertising & Effectiveness
As a small business owner, I can tell you firsthand that advertising is important to drive brand awareness. However, Web Tribunal notes that Super Bowl ads are 70x more expensive than running a normal television ad. This expense is out of the realm of possibility for many business owners who could most benefit from the exposure. The companies that have the funds to participate in Super Bowl advertising are typically large, established companies with equally established marketing budgets. Many of these brands are already top of mind for many consumers and their sales likely would not suffer by not participating in advertising during the Super Bowl.
According to ABX Advertising Benchmark Index, research shows that only about 60% of the viewers tuned in are “reasonably engaged” in watching The Super Bowl. ABX Advertising Benchmark Index research also shows that advertisements during the Super Bowl are not more effective than advertising ran throughout the rest of the year. However, Super Bowl ads tend to be more likable, have a positive impact on brand reputation, and drive more word-of-mouth brand awareness.
The Impact of Redirecting Super Bowl Advertising Funds to Charity
If the estimated $434.5 million on in-game ad revenue from 2022 was redirected to charity, the impact could be enormous, and the lives of countless people would be improved as a result. This money could be used to support initiatives aimed at making the world a better place. For example, companies could use the money to support environmental conservation efforts, to promote education and literacy, to feed the hungry, provide shelter for the homeless, help children get adopted, pay teachers a livable wage, or to support programs aimed at ending violence against women and children. The possibilities are endless, and the impact of redirecting Super Bowl ad money to charitable causes could be far-reaching and long-lasting.
For example, $434.5 million could:
- Cover the cost of domestic adoptions for 9,600-21,700 children in the United States (Source: FamilyEquality.org)
- Provide 4,345,000,000 meals to people facing food insecurity in the United States alone (Source: Feeding America)
- Pay for shelter for roughly 37,316 for a full year at a homeless shelter (Source: Profitable Venture)
- Provide a onetime teacher bonus of $9,200-$24,100 to teachers in the county hosting the Super Bowl (based on estimated teacher count for 2023 Super Bowl host county Maricopa County in Arizona and 2024 Super Bowl host Clark County in Nevada)
And the list goes on…
Corporate greed and inflation are at an all-time high. A benefit of redirecting Super Bowl ad money to charitable organizations is that it would help to reduce income inequality. The wealth gap between the rich and poor has been growing in recent years, and charitable organizations play a key role in helping to bridge that gap. By donating money to organizations that work to support those in need, companies would be making a significant contribution to reducing income inequality and helping to create a more equitable society.
Moreover, redirecting Super Bowl ad money to charitable causes would also have a positive impact on the companies themselves. By demonstrating a commitment to making a positive impact in the world, companies would be building their reputation and enhancing their brand. Consumers are increasingly looking for companies that share their values and are committed to making a positive impact, and companies that redirect their Super Bowl ad money to charitable causes would be well positioned to appeal to this growing market segment.
It's time for companies to consider this alternative approach to advertising during the Super Bowl, and to use their resources to make a real difference in the world. Moral of the story, there are so many better ways to spend $6.5 million that will have a positive lasting impact on humanity greater than 30 seconds.