If kids all around the globe spend the year looking forward to Christmas morning, fans of sports betting have a similar day around which their world seems to turn: Super Bowl Sunday.
This is the biggest day in sportsbook play by far!
One recent report estimates that American gamblers alone will wager approximately $7.6 b on the big game this year.
That works out to nearly 3% of all monies wagered on all sporting events annually in the United States!!!
As such, it’s easy to understand why sports betting enthusiasts look forward to this day so much. This is precisely when and where there is the most action to be had!
Understandably, just about every game provider in the industry is looking to get in on the action! This means extra tournaments, deposit bonuses, and much, much more.
It just so happens that there’s a lot to like about the big game this year. With Patrick Mahomes fighting through injury to lead his Kansas City Chiefs past the Cincinnati Bengals while the Philadelphia Eagles wiped the floor with the injury-depleted San Francisco 49ers.
This year’s Super Bowl looks to bring about a clash of legitimately historically strong teams – as well as some much-needed new blood in Jalen Hurts and company.
However there’s much more to the game than just that!
Kickoff for Advertising
Of course, the millions of viewers who tune into the Super Bowl this year won’t all be there for the sporting contest. Some will be watching socially, attending watch parties with family and friends, while others will be there for the Half Time Show.
Increasingly, though, it’s become a cultural trend for plenty of people to watch the game almost exclusively to see the ads!
Why is that?
Well, just as the clash of the NFL’s best teams has become a proving ground for the best of the best, the advertising industry has taken up the same energy. Super Bowl Sunday has become the traditional place for the ad industry’s best to go toe-to-toe, releasing their best material at the same time in the same place, to allow consumers the determine who scores and who fumbles.
With 30-second ad spots costing a handsome $7 m this year, it’s obvious why ad agencies would only want to bring their best work to the table here!
It’s also become common practice for the kind and quality of Super Bowl Ads to reflect larger social and economic trends. If previous years saw an uptick in advertising that reflected social justice issues of one kind or another, this year promises to lead in a different direction.
Part of the reason why is the Anheuser Busch has relinquished its traditional exclusive rights to beer ads during the game – which means it’s open season for other beer brands to bring their A Game to the party. It’s also been noted that TikTok has invested considerably in Super Bowl ad space for the first time in its history.
Selling Gambling Itself… and Fighting Back Against It
With gambling in the United States dwelling in its traditional role in American life – both widespread in its use and somehow simultaneously controversial among lawmakers and religious groups – it will come as no surprise that there is a bit of controversy involved this year.
Sure enough, major efforts are going on out on both sides of the issue.
First of all, FanDuel has partnered with football legend Rob Gronkowsi to present a one-of-a-kind ad for sports betting action!
The four-time Super Bowl champion will attempt to kick a field goal from 25 yards out. If he succeeds, FanDuel will dole out a handsome $10 million to its users in the form of free bets. Numbers (and an epic party personality) like that will be sure to drum up a lot of interest for this brand.
At the same time, several U.S. States are going to the mat to try and prevent the growth of legal gambling. The latest iteration of this trend comes in New York, where legislators are attempting to ban or restrict advertising of sportsbook and gambling of all kinds, even though it has been legalized in that state.
One can and should expect more legislative action to follow, both in New York and in other States.
They won’t just be coming for advertising, either. Lawmakers seem keen to crack down on anything that could be seen as “recruiting” vulnerable individuals into their nefarious business model – as such, anything designed to draw new players into the fold can be seen as suspect. This include not only mainstream media advertising but also all other kinds of marketing, as well promotions (including new players bonuses, free bets, deposit matching, and so forth).
It will be interesting to see if gambling ads during the Super Bowl – such as the FanDuel ad mentioned above – move the dial in the direction of my widespread acceptance of live gambling and sports betting in American life, or if they edge things in the other direction.
Perhaps things will continue as they are, but it wouldn’t be terribly surprising to see regulations that have become widespread in Western Europe emerge in the United States as well: measures such as limiting deposits for players under 25 years old, or banning the use of credit cards (to prevent players from gambling with borrowed money).
In the meantime, we wish both Super Bowl teams the best of luck… as well as the millions of Americans who will be betting on the outcome!