Super Bowl Advertising: Is Snapchat the New TV?

The advertising buzz leading up to the Super Bowl is nothing new. Every year, we analyze the price tag for a 30-second spot during the game, pore over the list of brands purchasing ad time, and speculate on who the winners and losers will be. But traditional TV advertising is not the only option for brands with big budgets to spend in the 2017 Super Bowl.

Last year, Snapchat splashed onto the scene during last year’s game with its first sponsored animated lens that allowed users to dump a virtual cooler of Gatorade over their selfies. The lens earned 165 million views and won an award the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

In the wake of that runaway success, Snapchat has been expanding its football ad offerings. AdAge reported on a leaked Snapchat sales deck that featured season-long ad packages for up to $5 million. While that price point may seem high at first glance, it actually provides a lot of value when you consider Snapchat’s incredible reach.

Snapchat has more than 100 million daily users, and it reaches 41% of 18 to 34 year olds on any given day. Since a dwindling number of millennials are watching TV ads, and two-thirds use an ad blocker on at least one advice, Snapchat makes a good case. For $5 million, brands can have months of targeted reach to a valuable audience, on a platform where they already spend a ton of time.

The NFL season is almost over, but Snapchat is still doing a major advertising push to secure sponsors for the Super Bowl.
Video ads on Snapchat that will run during the game; advertisers can expect up to 3 million views for each. Snapchat is offering spots to four sponsors.
National geofilters during the game can expect 35 to 40 million swipes (which run for around $600,000).
Two sponsored lenses are reportedly available for this Super Bowl. A lens in the first position in the menu can expect 10 to 20 million plays (worth $600,000); a lens in the last position can expect 7 to 12 million plays (worth $400,000).

Traditional TV advertising during the Super Bowl, by contrast, is expected to cost up to $5.5 million for a 30-second spot in a game that regularly draws more than 100 million viewers. GoDaddy, Mars Incorporated, Avocados from Mexico, WeatherTech, Wix, and Anheuser-Busch InBev have all announced plans to purchase ad time. People still tune in for the big game to watch commercials, and brands looking to reach older customers may be wise to stick with this model. But for brands that want to reach a younger audience and have to choose between TV and Snapchat ads, Snapchat offers more bang for your buck. Ad options on the app aren’t cheap, but they are targeted, relevant and last a lot longer than 30 seconds.

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