The Super Bowl is unquestionably an extraordinary phenomenon. Everything about it is exaggerated, whether it be its half-time entertainment or the winners being hailed “World Champions” in an American-only sport. But it remains the single most sought-after advertising opportunity across the globe. Here’s why.
The annual sporting event is a cash cow. Last year, the event generated $485 million in advertising revenue alone. Bear in mind that an average 30-second slot during the 2022 broadcast cost an estimated $6.5 million, it’s no surprise the revenue is so jaw-dropping. So, why do businesses happily pay ridiculous amounts for a limited time? Quite simply, because a ridiculous amount of people watch it. Approximately 112 million people watched this year’s NFL showdown. In other words, 112 million people were on the receiving end of a global marketing campaign. As a result, any up-and-coming industry/business that wants to make a name for themselves, looks no further than the Super Bowl, albeit at its hefty costs.
Firstly, the financial opportunities the Super Bowl provides are endless. Moreover, for businesses to attain a reach of that amount of people, and all at the same time ultimately saves months of marketing campaigns. However, this creates bubble mania to the extreme. One well-publicised bubble in recent decades is the dot-com bubble, wherein hundreds of stocks skyrocketed based on its name. It became pure speculation. This was rather unsurprising as the turn of the millennium saw a huge advancement in the internet and computer technology as a whole.
During the midst of this bubble, the 2000 Super Bowl came around. After reading thus far, it is somewhat predictable to learn that it became known as the “Dot-Com Super Bowl”. Furthermore, 14 different dot-com companies featured advertisements at an average cost of $2.2 million per spot. This highlighted the sheer volume of companies at the time using the Super Bowl as an opportunity to promote their business. Above all, since the 2000 Super Bowl, only 4 out of the 14 companies are still active today.
Last month’s 2022 Super Bowl is already being dubbed as the “Crypto Bowl”. It featured a variety of cryptocurrency marketing in the form of TV commercials and stadium sponsorship. In a similar vein with the run-up to the Dot-Com Super Bowl, cryptocurrency saw an explosion in 2021, bringing in trillions of dollars to the industry. Consequently, companies such as Coinbase and FTX generated huge amounts of profits. Furthermore, these profits were re-invested into successful advertisements during The Super Bowl. For instance, Coinbase created a TV ad so unique that it managed to temporarily crash their server! The ad consisted of a moving QR code that would send viewers to the Coinbase website whereby they could sign-up and receive $15 in free Bitcoin.
Coinbase no doubt onboarded a lot of new customers to cryptocurrency. In other words, this meant retail investors had over 50 cryptocurrencies to invest in via the Coinbase exchange. The fact this happened so easily to such a new audience raises suspicion over its similarity to the Dot-Com bubble. More specifically, the same “meme” coins currently available on Coinbase are considered to have the same fundamentals the majority of the dot-com businesses had. To clarify, those fundamentals are pure speculation. Therefore, the argument for calling cryptocurrency a bubble is plausible. The majority of the top 10 cryptocurrencies four years ago are no longer there. The chances are this will repeat in four years as well. In short, The Super Bowl is one big advertising campaign and one should be cautious when something is sold hard to you. Research and necessary due diligence should be carried out.
Although the “Crypto Bowl” advertised fewer companies than the “Dot-Com Super Bowl”, I believe this year’s event will exemplify just how easy it was for retail investors to buy many over-hyped, speculative cryptos.
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