- Proving the reach of the NFL, the two most watched primetime TV shows last fall were NBC’s Sunday Night Football and CBS’s Thursday Night Football, both NFL properties.
- "Mass audience in a fragmented world is a rare commodity. There is nothing else on TV that does that," Jason Maltby, executive director of national broadcast for Mindshare, told Adweek about the value of the NFL.
- Even though the NFL is massively popular among marketers, the networks broadcasting the ongoing NFL playoff games report there are still spots available.
In a TV world where shows are often recorded and watched at the viewer’s leisure – and where ads are possibly fast-forwarded through – the NFL give marketers a valuable commodity: very large audiences tuned in real-time.
How large are those audiences? The biggest in TV by a fairly large margin. For example, 19 NFL broadcasts had an average of 25 million or more viewers, and according to Ad Age the most watched non-NFL broadcast was a special episode of CBS’s NCIS that garnered 19 million viewers.
Even though the NFL regular season is done, there’s still weeks of playoffs left giving marketers a few more opportunities to take advantage of the NFL juggernaut before the long break until next fall. And according to the networks there are still some ad spots available, even for Super Bowl 50, which airs on CBS early next month. Jo Ann Ross, CBS president of network sales, stating, "We're never sold out; there's always opportunities."
That said, Super Bowl spots are reportedly going for more than $5 million for a 30-second ad this season. And coming out of the first playoff weekend, its clear the hefty price tag is somewhat of a reach for advertisers outside of the usual categories: automotive, entertainment, insurance, technology and financial services.