SBD/November 21, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Thankful Indeed: NBC Lands Nearly $1M For Each Ad Running In Thursday Night Game

NBC's Patriots-Jets game is the last major ad platform before Black Friday
Thursday night's Patriots-Jets game on NBC, the first NFL game to be broadcast on primetime network TV on Thanksgiving, “could very well scare up [a] playoff-size rating,” and NBC Sports Group Exec VP/Sales & Marketing Seth Winter indicated that the network has “priced its commercial inventory accordingly,” according to Anthony Crupi of AD WEEK. Winter said every 30-second ad sold for the game "has a unit cost of $975,000." Winter: "There’s nothing that will air that will cost a dollar more or a dollar less.” Crupi reported the going rate for a regular-season game “is nothing short of extraordinary.” SQAD NetCosts estimates that a single 30-second spot in NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” flagship program “fetches around $500,000 while media buyers report paying around $535,000 a pop.” Winter said, “Given that we’re the last stop before Black Friday, we’ve seen significantly more interest from retail than we’ve had in the past.” He added that financial services, tech and auto “will also be well represented.” Crupi noted the “unique adjacency to the biggest shopping day of the year also helped justify NBC’s steep unit cost.” A TV buyer said, “The potential for a huge captive audience and the proximity to Black Friday and Cyber Monday made it hard to pass up, even at that price” (, 11/19).

THURSDAY GAMES NOT GOING ANYWHERE: This year is the first time the NFL has played Thursday night games beginning early in the season, and SI’s Peter King said he believes the NFL is "concerned" with the quality of the games, but "because the ratings are good, I don’t think they’re going to do anything about it.” King noted a "majority of players who play in the Thursday night game wish they had until Sunday,” but unless the "injury total and the percentage of injuries in the Thursday night games is higher than it is in the Sunday games, I don’t think the NFL is going to change” (“PTI,” ESPN, 11/20).
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