Super Bowl Sunday is regarded as one of the biggest occasions of the year in the United States. From the barbecues and chicken wings to the ads and much-anticipated halftime show, many people consider it a holiday in its own right, even though it has yet to achieve that status officially. I actually have a friend who always takes the Monday after Super Bowl Sunday off; it just goes to show you just how much alcohol people consume that night.
As someone who studied and works in marketing, I can certainly appreciate the appeal of commercials played during the big event. From spots featuring the Budweiser Clydesdales to clever Doritos ads, these ads tend to be funny and worth tuning in for.
However, I don't think I've ever watched a football game from start to finish; I've just never been a fan of the sport. (I didn't even know who was playing until the teams were mentioned in a segment on Fox News this morning.) Instead, I have always followed baseball and basketball, which likely rank as the second and third most popular sports in the U.S. Still, neither the World Series nor NBA Finals get nearly as much fanfare as Super Bowl Sunday. It's no wonder the ratings are always through the roof and that a 30 second spot can command a whopping $5 million.
I'm sure a substantial slice of tonight's audience won't be tuning in for pigskin. It's more about the overall experience, which has become something of a ritual -- hanging with friends, scarfing down pizza, drinking beer, and laughing at irreverent commercials. Many people use the event as an excuse to catch up, leaving the game on in the background while they dine and banter.
Are you going to be tuning in tonight? Do you watch for the big game, for the ads, or both?