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Super Bowl Sunday: A Game Changer for U.S. Food and Beverage Brands

The National Football League championship game is right around the corner. While football fans everywhere are gearing up for the big day, we are eagerly awaiting the release of the most high-profile television commercials, also known as the Super Bowl ads. As food ingredient marketers, we have a vested interest in the marketing communications used by consumer brands to reach large demographics. Plus, we love great advertising! That’s why our team is coming together this Sunday to watch the Super Bowl and discuss our thoughts on the ads—and you can bet there will be plenty of food. (Check back next week for a list of our favorite 2018 Super Bowl ads.)

Super Bowl Viewership

With an average audience of 113.7 million people and 70 percent of all U.S. households tuning in each year, the Super Bowl is the most watched U.S. television broadcast. The game also creates an opportunity for food and beverage brands to engage with consumers online. Last year, 48.3 million Americans engaged in more than 190 million social media interactions across Facebook and Twitter, according to a 2017 report by Nielsen. With nearly 80 percent of consumers engaged in social media while watching the Super Bowl, food and beverage brands have an opportunity to compete effectively—and perhaps go viral—by advertising during the biggest game of the year. *

With this in mind, Twitter is taking steps to become the top social media destination for the Super Bowl. The online news and social networking platform is creating the first-ever #BrandBowl as a place for advertisers and users to come together and discuss Super Bowl ads. Twitter will even hand out awards to the brands who generate the highest velocity of Tweets-per-minute and most retweets on a single Tweet, as well as the brand that drives the highest percentage of conversation without a national TV spot.

Picture of pizza and wings

Food and Beverage Consumption

Of course, as food and beverage consumers, we also have a sweet spot for the amount of food and beverages that are consumed on Super Bowl Sunday. Forbes prefaced it best in a recent article when they said, “The Super Bowl is to the food industry what Christmas is to retailers.” According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Super Bowl is the second largest U.S. food consumption day, surpassed only by Thanksgiving. While the Super Bowl doesn’t have an official “food item” like Thanksgiving’s obligatory turkey, there are a few front-runners:

  • Chicken wings – The National Chicken Council estimates that Americans will eat 1.33 billion chicken wings—up two percent (or 30 million chicken wings) from 2017.
  • Pizza – RetailMeNot.com predicts that Americans will buy 12.5 million pizzas, with an average order cost of $26.45.
  • Beer – More than 51.7 million cases of beer are sold every year on Super Bowl Sunday, according to Fox News.

What food and beverage products are on your 2018 Super Bowl menu, and what food ingredients does your company offer to help manufacturers meet demands for these products? You can bet pizza and wings are at the top of our list and will make an appearance at our Super Bowl watch party. Comment below to share your thoughts.

*It is important for food and beverage brands to understand the Super Bowl trademark rules before using the name in any context with their brand.

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