The NFL continues to kill it regarding advertising sales. In a recent Ad Week piece we see just how much moolah the National Football League’s partners are taking in.
We start with NBC’s Sunday Night Football. A 30-second spot on Sunday Night Football has a 2012 price tag of “around $545,000.” This would make NBC’s weekly NFL show the most expensive space on TV. Also according to Ad Week, NBC’s Thanksgiving Night game (featuring the New York Jets and New England Patriots) is priced at $975,000. Even with that large price tag, the broadcast is already 75% sold out.
CBS Sports told Ad Week that around 85% of their ad inventory is already sold, too. FOX added that they’d be around 90% old before the season even starts.
Given those price tags, those sell rates are ridiculous. yes, the NFL is popular. Ridiculously popular. Overall, the economic outlook over the past several years has been less than stellar. Even during the economic downturn, the NFL has been crushing it.
Taking into consideration that live sports is maybe the only television product that can avoid the advertising killing DVR — the NFL is an advertisers dream. The NFL’s stop-and-go style (i.e. touchdown, commercial, kickoff, commercial, etc.) is also tailor-made for commercial interruptions. And, lastly, because the product has been so interesting over the last decade, TV viewing fans are willing to put up with the (bordering on) absurd amount of stoppages.
We are in an age when TV networks are still learning how to deal with technology such as the DVR. The problem for the NFL going forward will not be TV. It will be the in-game experience.
The touchdown, commercial, kickoff, commercial sequence isn’t as acceptable when you are in the NFL stadium. Yes, it gives you ample time to go to a beer and a dog, but that’s where the benefits end.
Up here in the north, as the cold air hits this fall, I will be watching NFL RedZone. On the whole, I won’t be watching the traditional CBS and FOX broadcasts. And I damn sure will avoid the stadium in the frigid autumn air at all costs. I know I am not the only one either. Yet, NFL broadcasts are still the hottest advertising ticket going. Amazing.