Super Bowl LIII and Advertising Issues

February 4, 2019

This weekend is the biggest weekend of the year for professional football: The Super Bowl. Sunday night, the New England Patriots will take on the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl LIII for the national championship title. Along with the game, of course, many people look forward to the various entertaining ads.
Anyone who watches the Super Bowl sees them on TV. Popular advertisement includes the Budweiser Horses, Doritos, M&M’s, Tide, various movie and car commercials, and so on and so forth. What many do not know, however, is the price at which these ads come.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the price for a 30-second ad in the first Super Bowl was set at $37,500. This year, however, a 30-second advertisement will be priced at $5.25 million. Is this price worth it, or is it wasteful?
“Most companies make more than that because of said ad, so I guess it’s pretty profitable,” claims sophomore Hunter Philpott. This idea makes sense. In Super Bowl LII, approximately 106 million people nationwide viewed the game in one way or another. Undoubtedly, many businesses should be successful in making a significant profit simply based off of the number of people that viewed their advertisements and then purchased their products.
However, making a profit is not the only concern some have with the abundance of ads throughout this excitement-filled game. Many worry about the psychological effects that the ads have on people. “I think advertising preys on people’s lack of intelligence,” claims junior Morgan Laird. “Not everyone understands how advertisers are trained to see people’s psychological weaknesses and exploit them as a profit.”
One example of this is the constant production of alcohol ads. Along with millions of adult viewers of the Super Bowl comes millions of underage viewers. That means millions of underage kids each Super Bowl watch alcohol advertisements that display exciting-looking parties, lovable puppies, and sometimes horses.
This is part of the concern that many have. Businesses have found out how to appeal to their audiences and use the enormity of viewers of the Super Bowl to their advantage, and some consumers see this as manipulative.
Another issue people have with ads is the controversy that occurs because of their content. From a 2017 ad that dramatized immigrants coming to America to a sermon by Martin Luther King Jr. set over a 2018 car commercial, businesses have been called out for inconsiderate, controversial ads year after year.
However, despite the controversy and concerns, advertisements and commercials continue to be one of the highlights for many during the Super Bowl. With the new year will come new commercials that will be talked about in the years to come. The concerns may not be going anywhere, but neither are the commercials.

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