A Golden Year For Super Bowl 50 And Digital Media

If you’re one of the 114 million people who watched Super Bowl XLIX on TV last year, you’ll likely be doing the same for Super Bowl 50. But this year, a new sheriff is in town: The cord-cutter, aka the person who refuses to pay $150 a month for cable TV. CBS clearly recognized this trend a few years back when it began streaming the event live online.

“We find that people are interested in having the game wherever they want and at any time. This gives viewers more options, and they’re able to watch on any device they want wherever they are,” said Jeffrey Gerttula, senior vice president and general manager of CBS Sports Digital. “The demand is there and consumers are expecting more.”  

This shift is largely due to younger audiences’ entertainment viewing preferences. Three out of four millennials report using a smartphone while watching TV. Additionally, Adobe Digital Index reports that more than 50% of millennials watch sports on something other than a traditional TV. This includes mobile phones, smart TVs, computers, and even gaming consoles. Of those watching the Super Bowl, 35% plan on watching the game on a connected TV and 25% are likely to download an app to watch.



So, what happens to all of those food, beverage, and car commercials that big brands are paying millions to air? CBS came up with a solution for these advertisers who would otherwise miss out on this digitally captive audience. The $4.5 million price tag of a 30-second Super Bowl spot has increased to $5 million this year, but for the first time ever, CBS will combine broadcast and online media by offering a TV/digital package. As a result, ads that are shown on TV will also be streamed live online to address omni-channel media consumption.

If you’re lucky enough to have a ticket to the Super Bowl, you, too, will be exposed to this digital shift. The Levi’s Stadium app offers users a full-service experience before ticket holders even hit the parking lot. The app delivers transportation information, mobile ticketing and parking passes, a stadium map, and even a feature that allows you to find the closest bathroom with the shortest line. The NFL has its own Super Bowl Stadium App that incorporates the features mentioned above, but also delivers pre-game activity information and fan-generated content.

And, whether you’re watching the game or not, you’ll be able to join in on the conversation on social media by following #SB50.

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