You can practically feel the anticipation building as that first commercial break after the coin toss nears…
And with that, hello USA TODAY Ad Meter 2021! We are excited to kick off another year as the leading tracker of public opinion on Super Bowl ads—and remember, if you’d like to have your opinion heard on this year’s Super Bowl LV commercials, you can register NOW to be an Ad Meter panelist.
Have questions? The 2021 FAQs are here to help.
The timeframe from now until voting opens—which will begin February 3 at noon ET—is always full of unknowns and surprises, so once again, our editorial staff will keep track of all things Super Bowl commercials, providing coverage of the latest and greatest as the Big Game goes live on February 7 on CBS.
Until then, sit back and enjoy what is setting up to be an exciting year for Ad Meter and all the great panelists.
To get things started, here are a few updates:
The two biggest names in Super Bowl ad coverage are partnering
Adding to the Super Bowl commercial coverage, Ad Meter is joining forces with Adweek to provide extensive editorial insights before, during and after the game. And keep an eye out for The Big Game Summit, a virtual event that will stream on Thursday, February 4.
Featuring both Adweek and Ad Meter editors, along with industry guests, the show will offer an inside look at Super Bowl commercial trends and sneak peeks, plus marketing and media leaders’ Big Game playbooks.
Note: If Super Bowl LV is postponed to February 28, 2021, the event will be rescheduled for February 26, 2021. No reregistration necessary—all existing registrations will be carried over to the new date, if required.
Rate it again!
Also brand-new to the Ad Meter fun, if you missed the opportunity to rate the ads during the Super Bowl—or just can’t get enough of the commercials—the Replay Ratings will provide a second chance to weigh in with an opinion.
The Replay Ratings will award superlatives like Most Comical, Most Heartwarming, Best Teaser, etc. Our editorial experts will select five ads in each category, and much like high school yearbook polling, it will be a popularity contest, where the ad with the highest total of panelist votes wins the title of “Most/Best ___.”
The ratings will take place from Monday, February 8 to Wednesday, February 10, when the Super Bowl commercial chatter is at a maximum level. And yes, we have totally made sure to include the best photo backgrounds of yesteryear, just so you can have that extra dose of yearbook nostalgia:
Note: You must be a registered panelist to participate and cast your superlative votes.
Big Game Sweepstakes
Incentives to register as an Ad Meter panelist? You bet! Thanks to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, registration this year could mean a trip to the Big Game in 2022. Learn more about the Sweepstakes here.
The Monday after the Super Bowl is always one of the busiest days for Super Bowl commercial breakdowns and recaps. This year, on Monday February 8, USA TODAY will take a dive into the Big Game’s best during Ad Meter Live powered by Verizon. The premium, 20-minute live experience will be hosted by USA TODAY’s Ralphie Aversa and will air on the Ad Meter site, USA TODAY YouTube channel, and social channels.
Stay tuned for more details!
Now, about that buzz.
Prices are holding steady
The cost for a spot in the Super Bowl LV ad lineup is reportedly in the $5.5 million range, a similar price tag to 2020 ($5.6 million). Additionally, it’s been said that CBS requires advertisers to pay an extra $200,000 to have the spot run on its streaming platform.
Currently, CBS has not sold out their inventory, with somewhere in the 80-percent range having been filled. (Last year, FOX sold out in late November.)
Speaking of which …
Who’s in, who’s out?
Unlike the past several years, many brands have been quiet about their plans for the Big Game spots. Whether that’s because of the Presidential Inauguration, the impact of the coronavirus, or a combination of many elements, the news surrounding who’s in and who’s out has been minimal at best.
But that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been any news.
Big names like Coca-Cola and Pepsi-Cola have both bowed out of this year’s Super Bowl (though Pepsi will have the Halftime Show, plus brands under its umbrella). They join Hyundai, Avocados from Mexico, and Olay as brands from the 2020 lineup that won’t be appearing.
On the other side, Cheetos and Doritos—two brands that have already released teasers—will be part of the commercial festivities, along with Pringles, M&M’s, Kia, TurboTax, Mountain Dew, WeatherTech, and Amazon… and we expect more to come as we get closer to the beginning of February.
Just a fun guess: From what we’ve seen so far, it would be a safe bet to expect more than a few big-name celebs in this year’s spots.
New to the “game”
According to Adweek, Vroom, Fiverr, and Miracle-Gro will all make inaugural appearances during Super Bowl LV.
That’s all for now—again, welcome to USA TODAY Ad Meter 2021!