According to the most recent Seton Hall Sports Poll, a whopping 68% of all Americans plan on watching Super Bowl 50.
That’s roughly 218 million people, not counting the international numbers.
Well, because it’s the Super Bowl.
But given a choice of reasons, “I’m a football fan” and/or a “fan of one of the teams playing” account for only 59% of all Americans who plan on watching.
And, sponsors take note, a full 10% of those who said they would be watching say they will do so because they are “interested in seeing the commercials.” And 18% because “it’s a big event.” That’s 28% (approximately 61 million people) who will be watching and are not doing so primarily to watch football. They are watching to be entertained.
We also know that 55% of everyone watching (118 million people) say they’ll watch the Super Bowl commercials closer than they normally watch commercials. Because, well, Super Bowl commercials have come to be a part of the entertainment.
But here’s the kicker, as Darren Rovell of ESPN notes:
88% say seeing a product in a Super Bowl ad doesn't affect their buying habits (Source: @HallSportsPoll)
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) January 28, 2016
And this, of course, is right in line with the numbers we polled in the Fall when a resounding 44% said they paid attention to sponsor signs in stadiums; but an overwhelming majority said that it made no difference:
85% of people say that a sports sponsorship doesn't affect their decision to buy that brand (Seton Hall Sports Poll). Too low for $ spent.
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) November 2, 2015
Rovell is right. That’s just way too low a number to be possible for all the money spent. But remember, these numbers reflect what people think and what they say, not how they behave or what they ultimately do.
As for the ROI on dollars spent on advertising to over 200 million people, many of whom are watching for the express purpose of being entertained by your ad? This article in Ad Sense breaks it down, and the number of repeat advertisers speaks volumes– as does the number of new advertisers launching a product campaign.
And ultimately, it’s about brand awareness. You may not run out to buy that product on Monday, but you (and close to 220 million other people) will be aware of it. And that’s a first and crucial step in product marketing.
Professor Scott Rothbort of the Stillman School of Business cited findings of the Seton Hall Sports Poll in an article he wrote for MarketWatch.
In the article, “4 ways to make money on fantasy sports without gambling,” Rothbort, the founder and president of LakeView Asset Management, writes:
Daily fantasy sports or “DFS” sites have been all the rage recently, as its advertising has inundated the airwaves, participation has surged and controversy has taken root. Governmental regulators and attorneys general have voiced their opinions as to its legality (or lack thereof) in hearings and pronouncements too numerous to list. Furthermore, there was even an “insider trader” case which raised some concerns as to fairness in these sports fantasy leagues.
In other words, there’s a lot of heat being generated in the space. Is it a passing fad or is there something lasting here as a business? And if so, what does that mean for a potential investor (as opposed to a player)?
The Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted by the Sharkey Institute at Seton Hall University‘s Stillman School of Business, recently asked the public what they thought about DFS: Are these games of skill or gambling; should they be regulated; and, should they be legal?
In the November poll, 50% say they believe it is a form of gambling, 30% say it is a game of skill and 20% did not know. This compares to the same poll conducted in September in which 52% said gambling, 31% responded skill, leaving 17% who did not know. The lack of any real movement in these numbers, despite all the controversy during the time between the polls, indicates a solid result.
Also in the November poll, on the question of should there be state regulation: 51% said yes and 35% said no. As to legality, in the same poll, 54% said it should be legal and 38% said illegal.
The takeaway from these polls is that a majority of respondents believe that the sports-fantasy industry should be legalized and regulated. That is really what the attorneys general want. By doing so, this would enable the states to: control the activities, impose licensing fees, and make sure they get their fair share of taxes from winnings. The IRS already requires the issuance of a 1099 form for winnings over $600, much like what is done at the racetrack, and hence the federal government already has its finger in the sports fantasy pie.
I am not a regulator or an attorney. I am an investor and finance professor. My questions are not on legality or gambling but … how can you make money by investing alongside the fantasy sports industry? Read more.
The Seton Hall Sports Poll’s results were featured in the NY Daily News, NJ.com, The Record, Legal Sports Report and Fields of Green, an online partnership between USA TODAY Sports Media Group and the USC Sports Business Institute
A discussion about the poll results can be heard on Seth Everett’s “Sports with Friends.”
The Daily News and NJ.com focused on the finding that following the Paris attacks that included terrorist activity outside the Stade de France during a major soccer match, 73% of Americans say they are very or somewhat concerned about attending a sporting event in a large venue.
The Record and Legal Sports Report wrote about the findings regarding Daily Fantasy Sports.
Legal Sports Report: “Poll: Half Think Daily Fantasy Sports Should Be Legal; Half Also Think DFS Is Gambling“
Fields of Green focused on the public perception of stadium sponsorship included in the Poll’s last results.
Fields of Green: “Fans say they aren’t affected by team sponsorship deals“
You can hear Seth Everett and Rick Gentile discuss these and other findings on the podcast, here.