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Performer Mayyadda singing at the University of Minnesota Juneteenth Celebration “We Are The Noise: The Echoes of Our Ancestors” captured on Saturday, June 15.
Best photos of June '24
Published June 23, 2024

Some viewers just tune in for commercials during the Super Bowl

The commercials that air during the football game have become a larger part of the game since the 1980s.

The air smelled strongly of wieners and pizza as Mariano Garcia and his friends watched the game on Super Bowl Sunday, but during opening kickoff there was chatter about the last commercial.

“It’s the commercials that make the Super Bowl,” Garcia, a recreation, park and leisure studies senior, said.

It’s a sentiment he admits is a bit ridiculous.

The Super Bowl has had to increasingly share its spotlight with advertisements since the 1980s, when viewers reached almost 100 million and an Apple commercial made a splash.

John Eighmey, Raymond O. Mithun Land Grant Chair in Advertising at the University, said the Super Bowl’s commercials draw an audience of their own.

“It’s a day of national hype and hope,” he said. “Everyone is gathered around the set.”

He said the ad spots, which cost $2.7 million for 30 seconds this year, are particularly valuable for companies because of the unique dynamics of the Super Bowl audience.

“(Viewers) are paying attention,” he said. “It’s not just a large audience, but an attentive one.”

Among people between the ages of 18 and 24, commercials are the most popular part of Super Bowl Sunday, according to a 2005 survey by the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association.

In the survey, 24 percent of respondents said the most important aspect of the Super Bowl was the ads, 19 percent said the game was most important and 17 percent said getting together with friends was most important.

Matt Roznowski, a political science junior, said he was intrigued by the Patriot’s storyline of a perfect season, but he wasn’t very excited for the game.

He said he looked forward to watching the game with his friends and enjoying the spectacle the event has become.

“Now it’s more of a production,” he said. “It’s an excuse to get together, drink and watch commercials.”

But advertisers aren’t the only ones capitalizing on the biggest game of year.

The Super Bowl has become known as the largest at-home party event of the year, according to Hallmark Cards. With those parties comes considerable consumer spending.

People preparing for Super Bowl parties were expected to spend about $9.5 billion this year, according the National Retail Federation.

The attendees of those parties were expected to eat 11 million pounds of potato chips, 8.2 million pounds of tortilla chips and 13.2 million pounds of avocado were expected be consumed Sunday, according to the American Snack Food Association.

The game was also expected to drive television sales. According to the results from the Sports and Technology survey, $2.2 billion of high-definition television sets were expected to sell.

Not everyone agrees that the lack of focus on football is a good thing.

Luke Fuglie, a North Dakota State alumnus, said he knows people that don’t care about the game at all but were watching it anyways. He said he thought it was “a little ridiculous.”

Fuglie said he had his own reasons to watch the game.

“I’m watching to see the golden boy Tom Brady,” he said. “He’s like the Joe Montana of our era.”

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