Superbowl ads pricier than ever this year

Thursday, January 31, 2013 - 11:16pm

The stakes are high and so is the stress, but not just for Superbowl players -- advertisers are spending millions of dollars this year to capture the attention of more than 100 million people watching.

"It is very expensive. For every set of eyeballs you're paying for, you better have something worthwhile to say or you're wasting your money," says Matthew McCarthy with Axe Brand Development.

Whether it's beer, chips, or Axe spray for men, a 30 second spot during the Superbowl means big money and a big gamble for advertisers. Many watch the Superbowl for the commercials more so than for the game.

"It's a form of entertainment. I mean it's right up there with the half-time show. In terms of TV production, it's come a long way," says Gabriel Acuña, former President for the Advertising Federation of El Paso.

And most advertisers are using social media to enhance their reach -- even having online contests to decide the ending of the ads.

"When you have a certain call to action and they either have to go to a website for a contest or they have to go to a Facebook page or tweet, then you're reaching many other people because those people who are tweeting, who are going to their Facebook page are essentially showing it to their friends, and their friends are either just seeing it or interacting as well," says Acuña.

But still, ad companies aren't stopping there. Online teases, trailers, and early releases for commercials are used so advertisers can get more bang for their buck.

Annual spending on Superbowl ads doubled over the last decade, from $130 million for the 2003 game to almost $263 million last year.

This year, advertisers paid an average of $3.8 million for 30 seconds of airtime and those who waited until later to buy a spot are paying about $4 million.

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