Ahead of the big game on February 1, Facebook is doing everything possible to suck up Super Bowl ad dollars. “Marketers are looking to other media, specifically Facebook, to complement TV around live sports events,” a company spokeswoman tells Social Media & Marketing Daily.
To make its case to Madison Avenue, Facebook is boasting about all the Super Bowl-related activity it saw during last year’s lopsided battle between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos.
Outnumbering the 115 million people who watched the blowout on TV — at least in the U.S. — Facebook claims to have reached 170 million people with related stories on the game day.
The social giant recorded 185 million game-related likes, comments and shares — while on game day alone, a whopping 1.7 billion Super Bowl-related News Feed posts were “seen” in the U.S. via mobile device.
Among other brand partners during last year’s game, Facebook helped Microsoft reach 57% of the national target of consumers 18-to-49 (when combined with its four-day TV campaign), per Nielsen analysis, using its Cross-Platform Campaign Ratings service.
With the younger 21 to 24-year-old audience, Microsoft more than doubled its reach — extending its TV reach of 24% to a combined TV-plus-Facebook reach of 53%, Nielsen found.
Separately, Visa’s Super Bowl TV campaign reached 64% of the 21- to 24-year-old segment, while its combined TV- plus-Facebook campaign achieved a combined reach of 80%, according to Nielsen.
For this year’s brawl between Seattle and the New England Patriots, Facebook has already fleshed out partnerships with Toyota, Pepsi, Anheuser-Busch, Intuit and TurboTax.
But it has no plans of stopping there. “Using [the] Facebook video platform provides a great opportunity to extend your Super Bowl campaign, and helps brands tell your story across screens,” according to a company spokeswoman. Expanding its sports-related ambitions, Facebook and the National Football League recently entered into a video-sharing partnership, which is being sponsored by Verizon Wireless.
Along with TV networks, social channels are benefiting from a boom in live sporting events, industry watchers say. In part, that’s because second screens and social channels are increasingly part of the TV-viewing experience. Indeed, TV viewers add another screen to their media experience at least 20% of the time, according to recent findings from Symphony Advanced Media.
Facebook has every reason to be optimistic about its ongoing video investments. Growth in click-throughs for video ads has outpaced clicks for other types of page posts on the social giant, according to Kinetic Social.
Videos uploaded directly to Facebook now outnumber YouTube videos posted to the site, according to recent data from social analytics firm Socialbakers. In addition, as of November, Facebook Pages posting Facebook videos now outnumber Facebook pages posting YouTube videos.
Across channels, video is booming — and it holds huge monetization opportunities. Indeed, online video's share of global ad spend will increase from 1.9% in 2014 to 2.8% in 2017, according to ZenithOptimedia's new Advertising Expenditure forecast.
On a daily basis, Facebook regularly racks up more than 1 billion video views, per its own product management department. Facebook continues to test new ways to make money off video. Most recently, the social giant began allowing advertisers to serve auto-play video promotions within its mobile apps as part of their app install ads.