Super Bowl LII Proves that Celebrities Rule, Cable is Still King and Netflix Failed

With 103.4 million viewers tuning in to watch Super Bowl LII, so it’s no surprise that it reigns as the most watched program in TV history. But where were people watching the game and what really caught their attention? Market research platform AYTM surveyed 1,000 respondents about these questions and more.

Alexa Lost Her Voice and the World Loved It

There was no shortage of celebrity star power in advertising this year. Doritos, M&M’s, Amazon’s Alexa, Bud Light and Tide all featured well known faces. Respondents reported that 38% are more likely to watch an ad with a celebrity, 47% with music and 41% with pop culture references.

Examining the data closer, AYTM noted that this year most beer/wine ads, with the exception of Michelob Ultra (Chris Pratt) and Stella Artois (Matt Damon), ran without celebrities. AYTM found that beer/wine tasters were only 18% more likely to respond to an ad with a celebrity. Although in the case of Stella Artois, the ad mentioned it’s charitable cause which appeals to those consumers who donate to charity and are more likely to enjoy a commercial with client testimonials (in this case Matt Damon) by 17%.

Meanwhile consumers of Amazon were 46% more likely to respond to an ad with a celebrity which explains the positive response to the Alexa ads featuring recognizable celebrities such as Gordon Ramsey, Cardi B, Rebel Wilson and Anthony Hopkins.  

When asked, respondents said that when comparing commercials during regular primetime TV to Super Bowl commercials 46% found they are about the same and 27% found they were much more influential. In a world where people fast forward thru most commercials, Super Bowl advertising can still capture the attention of consumers.


Cable was the Biggest Winner

AYTM found that 84% of respondents watched the game on their cable or satellite provider leaving only 9% watching on a streaming service. Of those that did stream the game, students were more inclined to use a streaming service by 33%.

This is low in comparison to an eMarketer study published in July 2017 stating that 26% of households are cord or never cutters in comparison to 74% who still subscribe to a cable or satellite provider. It would appear the 17% difference in streaming for Super Bowl is likely due to the game not being easily accessible to streamers. This is a common problem with live sports as AYTM found that when deciding to have cable/satellite, sports channels were extremely important to some (18%).


Debuts on Primetime TV May not be as Effective Anymore

Super Bowl has long been a great platform for teasing the next big blockbuster and this year was no exception. Of the trailers shown during the game, respondents enjoyed seeing the following trailers the most: Avengers: Infinity War (36%), Solo: A Star Wars Story (39%) and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (52%). Of the three trailers, only Solo: A Star Wars Story debuted while others were seen as teaser versions online prior to the game. Indicating that debuting on primetime TV may not be as effective as online.

While Netflix surprised Super Bowl fans with the release of their latest film, The Cloverfield Paradox, after the Super Bowl, only 6% of fans claimed they tuned in after to watch compared to 79% that did not. While 15% said they didn’t watch the movie after the game but plan to watch it eventually. Which raises the question if the stunt was really worth it? It seems that Netflix subscribers weren’t impressed.