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What surveys say about the Super Bowl

Super Bowl Sunday is just around the corner. Soon big-box retailers will wheel out the football-shaped soda displays, sports bars will bolt down their barstools and television networks will field last-minute calls from desperate corporations looking to pay millions for mere seconds of airtime.

According to Statista, around 100 million people watch the National Football League's championship game each year. And seven of the eight most-watched broadcasts ever are Super Bowls. Americans are obsessed with football - according to the Associated Press, half consider themselves fans of the sport - but on a single Sunday each year, pig-skin fever blankets the entire country.

Retailers rejoice
Last year Americans spent approximately $15 billion on Super Bowl-related retail items. According to a National Retail Federation survey, the average person spent $77 on these purchases. Of course, food was the main concern for most - 80 percent of fans bought food items. And, an estimated 43 million people used these snacks to cater private Super Bowl parties.

Around 10 percent of fans also purchased NFL apparel. According to the NFL Players Association, they most likely purchased Russell Wilson-related gear, as the Seattle Seahawks star quarterback has held down the top spot on the organization's Top 50 Player Sales List for the last two seasons.

Air and screen time up for grabs
This year CBS has reserved a number of advertising slots for companies looking to nab coveted Super Bowl airtime in the eleventh hour, reported Adweek. These slots are 30 seconds long and cost $5 million a piece. Of course, brands will be knocking down the network's door to reserve these spots. According to Forbes, these massive spends are worth the risk, as a single advertisement has the potential to net millions of customers in a matter of seconds.

Brands have also embraced social media. As a result, Web-only Super Bowl advertisements are gaining considerable momentum. Volkswagen creates particularly effective online spots. The German car manufacturer produced two of the 10 most-shared Super Bowl Web advertisements ever.

Companies also use social media platforms to engage with Web-savvy viewers in real-time, publishing Facebook updates and posting brand-based tweets to create buzz. Last year, Twitter users posted 28.4 million tweets about the Super Bowl, reported Variety. Facebook users were even more connected, publishing 265 million posts, comments and likes related to the event.

Gambling on the game
According to a Gallup survey, 17 percent of Americans bet on professional sports. Of course, the Super Bowl is a key event for folks looking to cash in on their football knowledge. Last year, Nevada sports books managed $115 million in Super Bowl-related wagers. This number doesn't account for unofficial office pools. It also doesn't include winnings earned via fantasy sports, as pay-to-play fantasy contests are illegal on Super Bowl Sunday, reported Forbes.

Bettors should put their faith in the underdog. According to FiveThirtyEight, the lesser team has prevailed in 11 of the last 15 Super Bowls.

  


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