Super Bowl kickoff is still two months away, but Madison Avenue has been readying game plans since summer for one of advertising's biggest events of the year. Every year, it seems the championship match gets off to an earlier start, and the latest is no different with NBC's commercial inventory nearly selling out before the NFL season began. Despite the record-high price tag the TV network charges to advertise during the game -- up to $6.5 million for 30 seconds of airtime -- many marketers still view the annual event as a top opportunity to reach consumers.
This season's game follows another unusual year of football, with the NFL sidelining some players due to COVID-19. Uncertainties throughout the season are likely to trickle into the Super Bowl's lead-up, pushing some longtime advertisers to sit out while opening space for newcomer categories like cryptocurrencies and sports betting to jump in.
Historically, the game is an ad revenue heavyweight, raking in $545 million in more than 57 minutes from ads in 2021's game. Still, it remains to be seen how the differing categories will face off as marketers navigate ongoing challenges spurred by the pandemic. As brands announce details on their upcoming commercials, Marketing Dive will update this tracker on the road to SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. Be sure to tune into this page ahead of the Feb. 13 match for the latest news about advertising's biggest night.