The Super Bowl is over for another year and in its wake we are left with memories of Beyonce, party snacks, and that strange stadium blackout. The yearly NFL championship is usually the highest viewed television broadcast of the year; this year 108 million people watched at least some of the game. For comparisons sake, the next highest broadcast for the same week brought in 22 million viewers. So it’s no secret why advertisers spend big to reach this broad audience. In 2013 a 30 second spot cost up to $4 million, and that money is spent producing commercials that are funny, creative, and sometimes controversial. For some viewers, the high quality commercials are more popular and interesting than the game they support.
This quick look at the money and commitment behind Super Bowl ads speaks volumes to the nature of advertising and marketing in the United States. The Business/SPEA Information Commons has various databases and e-journals available for your research into the ways companies reach potential and current customers.
Redbooks database is an easy to use source for a breakdown of ad spending per company, as well as details on various ad agencies. The Library also has access to various advertising periodicals, including Adweek which discusses creativity and popular culture within TV and internet advertising. If you want to know how much Target spent on TV ads last year, or are writing a report on how companies are incorporating internet advertising into their budgets, this complete list of advertising resources will be a great source.
Closely connected to advertising is the exciting world of consumer research and demographics. Thanks to the wonders of the US Census and consumer research firms, the curious researcher can know the answers to questions such as “What is the average amount spent per person on Televisions and Radios in Provo, Utah?” For detailed data on buying habits of Americans, the Consumer Expenditure Survey is a great place to look. Other useful demographic tools include Simply Map, which visually displays detailed census and consumer data in easy to read maps and charts. For analysis on such things as spending habits and branding, check out Passport GMID. And be sure to check out a complete list of the Library’s marketing research sources.