Super Bowl XLV won’t be played for another three months, but broadcaster Fox has already sold out all the advertising slots for the big game. Fox had been seeking close to $3 million per 30-second spot, according to Advertising Age.
That’s way ahead of last year’s schedule, when CBS didn’t sell its last ad until less than a week before Super Bowl Sunday. The year before, broadcaster NBC sold its last ad slot just two days before the game after offering last-minute discounts to advertisers.
That so many companies are willing to shell out millions for ad buys – and just midway through the NFL’s regular season, at that – can only be taken as a positive sign for the slowly-recovering economy. Indeed, some big companies that sat out last year’s game, including Pepsi (Stock Quote: PEP) and General Motors, will return with ads this year, according to the New York Times. GM, of course, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July 2009, and Pepsi struggled along with the rest of the economy through 2008 and 2009. But GM has exceeded expectations post-bankruptcy, and PepsiCo’s stock has risen steadily during the past year.Despite the apparent optimism of these and other companies, consumer confidence has been slower to rebound, with many still wary of both big-ticket purchases and big holiday spending. As large companies once again find room in their budgets for advertising, it seems they’re all eager to entice these wary consumers to return to their spending ways.