Sit back, relax, and eat copious amounts of buffalo chicken dip. The 2021 NFL season kicked off last night, and brands are here for it. As the games begin, several are revving up their marketing engines to get in front of eyeballs that are increasingly hard to come by on regular old TV. 👀
- Lowe’s—the “official home improvement sponsor” of the NFL—rolled out a spot yesterday that stars former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.
- Celebrity Cruises debuted a multi-million-dollar campaign yesterday to encourage travel.
- Uber Eats tapped Lil Nas X and Elton John to star in the latest installment of its “Tonight I’ll Be Eating” campaign that will run during games.
- FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange, released an ad starring Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady and his wife Gisele Bündchen.
- FanDuel, one of the league’s official sports betting partners, recently unveiled details about a marketing push that will run throughout the season.
And that’s just a few. Plus, the NFL made a kickoff ad of its own.
Bottom line: As streaming continues its popularity streak, it seems harder and harder for marketers to reach large audiences on live TV. But football provides that opp—per Nielsen data cited by Ad Age, 73 of the 100 most-watched broadcasts in 2019 were NFL games. According to Sportico, “By the time Tom Brady had earned his seventh Super Bowl ring, Fox, NBC, CBS, and ESPN had generated a combined $3.9 billion in ad sales.”—MS