17 Super Bowl Advertisement Stats to Get the Ball Flying
Updated · Mar 04, 2023
There are roughly 330 million people in the United States, and about a third of them watch the Super Bowl every year. Specifically, 112 million did in 2022.
Some watch it for the sport, but a third of all viewers say the main appeal for them stems from the high-quality commercials.
Join us as we go through a long list of Super Bowl advertisement stats to analyze what exactly it is about Super Bowl ads that fascinates people in the US so much.
Superb Super Bowl Advertising Facts (Editor’s Choice):
- In 2021, Super Bowl broadcaster CBS generated $545 million in ad revenue alone.
- A Super Bowl ad costs up to 70 times more than a regular ad.
- 56 unique advertisers showed 68 ads during the Super Bowl in 2022.
- Budweiser has spent $470.5 million on Super Bowl commercials so far.
- The average cost of a Super Bowl ad in 1967 was $37,500.
- In 2022, a 30-second spot in the Super Bowl cost $7 million.
- Google’s “Loretta” and Amazon’s “Before Alexa” ads cost $16.8 million each.
- Polestar’s 2022 ad performed 23 times better than the average Super Bowl ad.
- The Super Bowl generated $5.2 billion in ad revenue in the first 52 years of its existence—and another $2 billion in the last four.
Super Bowl Numbers from 2022
Anybody who’s seen the Super Bowl knows it features quite a few commercials.
In fact, their total running time rivals that of the match itself.
Let’s see how many advertisers run commercials and how many ads are seen by how many people.
1. In 2022, 56 unique advertisers showed 68 ads during the Super Bowl.
(Source: Marketing Dive)
First things first: how many commercials are in the Super Bowl in any given year?
Usually, around 70, though this can change based on the duration of the individual ads. While the default is 30 seconds, if multiple companies prefer to run 60-, 90-, or even 120-second-long ads, then there’ll be fewer in total.
In 2022, 56 unique advertisers showed a total of 68 ads during the game.
2. According to Super Bowl advertisement stats, ads took up 44 minutes in 2022.
(Source: Marketing Dive)
Did you know that the actual game time is just 60 minutes?
And yet, people spend an average four hours in front of their TVs watching the show. How come?
Well, there’s the 60-minute game, the 15-minute halftime show, the setup times, clock stoppages, timeouts, and, of course, the ads that run for 44 minutes.
3. A startup had to move to a three-times-larger facility after a successful Super Bowl ad.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal)
It’s difficult to calculate the exact return on investment from Super Bowl ads. As a matter of fact, it’s hard to know precisely how effective any given advertising campaign is. But one company drew immense benefits from its 2016 ad at the Super Bowl—and it knew right away.
Death Wish Coffee, a startup, aired a commercial that was so successful the business had to relocate to a new facility that was three times larger than the original one to keep up with demand.
How could a startup afford an ad at the Super Bowl?
It couldn’t. But Death Wish Coffee was lucky enough to win a contest for a free ad at the Super Bowl organized by Intuit Quickbooks.
4. 105 million people have seen Amazon’s “Mind Reader” commercial online.
The most viewed Super Bowl commercial of 2022 was Amazon’s “Mind Reader.”
Now, “most viewed” here doesn’t refer to the number of people who saw it on TV, but those who watched it online. Specifically, 105.3 million netizens saw Amazon’s ad—quite impressive, except that Amazon’s 2021 ad, “Alexa’s Body,” attracted 15 million more views.
The second most popular commercial in 2022 was Nissan’s “Thrill Driver,” at 66.4 million views. T-Mobile’s “Do It For the Phones” followed behind, being played 45.7 million times. T-Mobile also ran another advert called “Zach Braff and Donald Faison Sing a Duet for Home Internet,” which placed #8 with 28.3 million views.
Super Bowl Commercial Prices in 2022
If the previous fact inspired you to invest in a Super Bowl advert for your business, you’ll probably need to think again.
Unless you’re Pepsi or Amazon, chances are you lack the funds for it.
Still, in case you’d like to start saving up, here’s how much it costs.
5. The average cost of a Super Bowl ad in 1967 was $37,500.
(Source: Super Bowl Ads)
While the cost of a Super Bowl commercial in 2022 is prohibitive for almost all but the largest of businesses, it wasn’t particularly affordable five decades ago, either.
In 1967, the first year in which the Super Bowl took place, a 30-second advert was priced at $37,500. Sounds cheap?
It wasn’t. Adjusted for inflation, that’s still $332,500 today.
Anyway, ad prices rose quickly when broadcasters realized the value of air time during the Super Bowl. By 1974, they asked for $103,500; by 1985, $525,000; by 1995, 30 seconds of ad time cost $1,150,000.
How much does it cost now?
6. A 30-second ad spot cost up to $7 million in 2022.
The average cost of a Super Bowl commercial in 2022 was $6.5 million. This means that a second of ad time was worth roughly $220,000—less than 7% of the households in the country make that much in a year.
30-second ad spots first broke the $5 million threshold in 2017. By 2021, the average cost was $5.6 million, only to go up a further $900,000 by the following season. This is the sharpest year-over-year increase ever in the history of the event.
Do you want to venture a guess at how much they will cost in 2025?
7. A Super Bowl ad costs up to 70 times more than a regular ad.
(Source: Fit Small Business)
One of the most fascinating Super Bowl advertising facts you’ll read isn’t simply about the price of commercials during the game—it’s about the difference in cost compared to regular TV.
The average cost of an ad on a national network in the US is $104,700, which means that a Super Bowl ad is approximately 70 times more expensive.
The discrepancy may sound unreasonable, but it makes sense in a way—TV viewership during the game is also dozens of times higher than normal.
Fun fact: While no other program can beat the Super Bowl in terms of ad prices, NBC's Sunday Night Football is a worthy contender—30 seconds of air time sell at $811,679.
8. The automotive industry spent $84 million on Super Bowl ads in 2020.
The cost of commercials during the Super Bowl means that even a single ad can and will set you back millions. Few can afford such prices.
Historically, the beverage industry used to be the highest spender, but since 2010 or so, that’s no longer the case. Nowadays, automotive companies tend to dedicate the most resources to Super Bowl ads. In 2020, they spent a combined $84 million.
Other popular Super Bowl commercial categories include alcoholic beverages ($42 million), computer and streaming service companies ($26 million), laundry detergents ($16 million), and snacks (also $16 million).
9. In 2022, there were 11 car commercials in the Super Bowl.
(Source: Automotive News)
Five of them concerned electric vehicles—though one was actually an ad for Wallbox, an EV charging technology provider. There were also ads for an electric Chevy, a Kia, and a BMW. Finally, GM’s commercial showed a “villain” who was trying to get everyone to use electric cars.
Considering how powerful Super Bowl marketing can be, we expect the share of EV ads to rise exponentially in the near future as various regulations—such as California’s 2035 EV mandate—come into force.
10. Google’s “Loretta” and Amazon’s “Before Alexa” ads each cost $16.8 million.
Allow us to introduce you to a pair of extremely expensive Super Bowl advertising facts.
In 2020, Google and Amazon each dropped a mind-blowing $16.8 million to run 90-second-long ads during the game.
Google’s was about a man using Google Assistant to take a trip down memory lane, reminiscing about his wife, Loretta, who had passed away.
Amazon’s, too, was about a virtual assistant. It featured Ellen DeGeneres pondering what life must have been before her.
The former was a tad sentimental, and the latter was quite hilarious, but both of them were very, very pricey.
Super Bowl Revenue in 2022
The inordinate sums advertisers pay to have their ads aired during the Super Bowl go straight into the broadcaster’s pockets.
CBS, NBC, ABC, and Fox are the four networks that broadcast the event on a rotating basis.
And over the past few years, they have each collected roughly half a billion dollars per game.
11. In 2021, CBS generated $545 million in ad revenue from the Super Bowl alone.
It was CBS’s turn to broadcast the Super Bowl in 2021, and so also its turn to reap profits from the sale of ad time.
With a 30-sec Super Bowl ad cost of $5.5 million on average, the network made approximately $545 million from ad revenue alone. Approximately 14% of this came from automotive companies and 11% from streaming services, making them the biggest contributors of the year.
Fun fact: The media rights market accounts for $20 billion of the sports industry in the US. In other words, TV channels, radio stations, and internet services combined pay that much to broadcast sports matches.
12. The Super Bowl’s ad revenue amounted to a total $5.2 billion in the first 52 years of its existence.
The Super Bowl has been around for well over half a century now—since 1967. Every year, it has been home to some of the best commercials the world has seen.
In the first 52 years of its existence, it generated a total of $5.2 billion in ad revenue—i.e., the money the broadcasters collect to run businesses’ commercials.
Since then, as the cost of Super Bowl advertising has gone up substantially, so have earnings—in just four years, broadcasters made another nearly $2 billion.
Fun fact: 55% of millennials say they don’t consider the Super Bowl to be a sports event; they see it as a social event, an opportunity for a gathering, a party. The ads, known for their extremely high production value, doubtlessly play a major part in fuelling this perception.
13. Budweiser has spent $470.5 million on Super Bowl commercials so far.
Many well-known companies have made multiple appearances at the Super Bowl, but some have become a staple. Namely, Budweiser—the undisputed champion of ad spending.
All Super Bowl advertisers have to be ready to pay up a hefty amount to get their ad on TV, but Budweiser is on a completely different level—the beer company has dropped $470.5 million on Super Bowl commercials so far.
The only companies that come even close to such spending are Pepsi ($320.3 million) and Coca-Cola ($202 million). The next four companies are all automotive (Hyundai, Toyota, Kia, and Ford) and have amassed $100-$170 million in Super Bowl spending each.
Fun fact: Prior to 2021, Budweiser ran ads during the Super Bowl for 37 years straight. It took a break in 2021, devoting the money to fighting COVID-19 instead. It made a reappearance on our TV screens in 2022.
The Latest Super Bowl Trends
As the times change, so do Super Bowl ads. But are the ever-increasing prices of Super Bowl commercials still worth it?
14. The 2022 Super Bowl saw 30 new advertisers, including various crypto companies.
Despite the relative fall in popularity of the event itself in terms of viewers, the number of companies running Super Bowl commercials is still rising. The game does, after all, attract the single largest audience (100+ million people) advertisers can reach at once.
This year, there were 30 new advertisers, including multiple crypto exchanges such as Crypto.com and FTX. Some even called it the “Crypto Bowl,” drawing comparisons to the 2000 “Dot-Com Bowl,” when over a dozen dot-com companies ran ads.
Automotive and travel commercials were also up, likely due to the country having finally opened up post-pandemic.
15. Since 2010, Super Bowl ads have grown more expensive at a CAGR of 7%.
Even as Super Bowl advertising rates have gone up at a CAGR of 7%, audiences have actually declined by 0.4% annually.
The 2022 Super Bowl was the most-watched game since 2015, but the overall trend is downward. Advert prices, on the other hand, have risen steeply, with CPM (cost per mille, or cost per 1,000 impressions) going up from $28 to $49.
16. Polestar’s ad in 2022 performed 23 times better than the average Super Bowl ad.
A curious slew of Super Bowl advertisement stats reveals that while most commercials during the game are equal in terms of pricing, some are far more equal than others when it comes to performance.
Polestar, a Swedish car manufacturer, stole the show in 2022—its ad performed about 23 times better than average (based on the amount of online activity it triggered compared to other commercials during the game).
The top five Super Bowl ads in 2022 also include Cue, a healthcare technology company (22 times better than average), Amazon Prime Video (14 times), Kia Motors (10 times), and Universal Pictures (nine times).
In fact, four out of the top eight commercials were automotive (Kia at #4, Nissan at #6, and Toyota at #8), though the rest of them attracted only about 8-10 times higher traffic.
Funnily, there’s not a single crypto advert in the list of top Super Bowl ads despite the upsurge in crypto companies at this year’s game. Given the dramatic downturn in the cryptocurrency market this spring and summer, we’ll be curious to see whether anything improves next year.
17. 40% of Super Bowl viewers oppose social justice ads.
While the effectiveness of Super Bowl advertising is indubitable, it’s not so clear what messaging is appropriate and what isn’t.
A study found that 40% of Super Bowl viewers oppose social justice ads—that is, commercials that promote diversity and acceptance of marginalized groups.
Even more curiously, 60% of those who said they were unsure whether they would watch the game oppose such adverts.
As our collection of Super Bowl advertisement stats revealed, only the biggest names in each industry can afford to advertise during the game.
And, although it may be hard to say whether the immediate return on investment from a monetary perspective is worth it, earning the goodwill of a hundred million people certainly is.
A wayfarer by heart, Jordan fancies journeying into foreign lands with a camera in hand almost as much as he enjoys roving the online world. He spends his time poking at letters and pixels, trying to transmogrify them into something cool.