Ads Continue to Have Big Drawing Power on Super Bowl Sunday, According to Hanon McKendry Study Conducted by Harris Interactive

Over half of U.S. adult viewers(1) plan to watch the Super Bowl as much or more for the ads as for the game, with 66 percent of women tuning in as much or more for the ads

Jan 28, 2013, 08:10 ET from Hanon McKendry

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Jan. 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Super Bowl ads will rival the big game on February 3, with 56 percent of U.S. adults who plan to watch Super Bowl XLVII tuning in as much or more for the commercials as for the game according to the latest Hanon McKendry study conducted online by Harris Interactive among 2,166 U.S. adults ages 18 and older in January.  Interest in the ads is strongest among women, with 66 percent of female viewers saying they watch as much or more for the ads, compared to 47 percent of male viewers.

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The variation is even more significant among those viewers who say they tune in predominantly or exclusively for the ads—28 percent of women in 2013 vs. 12 percent of men.

Americans who plan to watch the big game also weighed in on the importance of various screens—TV, computer, smartphone and tablet— for their overall Super Bowl experience.  Television still outranks its closest competitor by more than 2:1, with 93 percent of viewers saying the big screen is at least somewhat important in order to have the best pre-game, game-day and post-game experience.  That compares to 41 percent who said computers were at least somewhat important, 28 percent who said smartphones and 25 percent who said tablets are at least somewhat important.

However, screen rankings varied significantly among different age groups, with considerably higher percentages of 18-34 year-old viewers saying alternate screens (other than television) are at least somewhat important in order for them to have the best overall Super Bowl experience.  [See "Big Game Experience" infographic.]

"Ads continue to be an important part of the full Super Bowl entertainment package," observed Bill McKendry, Founder and Chief Creative Officer at Hanon McKendry. "And trends show that entertainment carries over to the other three screens—computers, smartphones and tablets—which gives advertisers even more bang for their 3.8 million bucks."

According to the latest Hanon McKendry study, 71 percent of U.S. adults plan to watch Super Bowl XLVII, a number that has remained fairly steady since Hanon McKendry began the poll in 2006.  The study also confirmed consistently strong interest in Super Bowl advertising over the past eight years, with a solid 54-57 percent of adult viewers each year saying they tune in as much or more for the ads as for the game.

In 2009, MINDSCAPE, Hanon McKendry's digital team, launched Super Ad Poll, where visitors can vote for their favorite Super Bowl ads and get real-time results throughout the game.  This year, the poll will not only tally top ad picks, but the polling mechanism will track devices respondents use to login and cast their votes—smartphone, computer or tablet—helping to complete the picture of how people experience the big game. People can participate in Super Ad Poll 2013 by visiting on game day.  Voting begins at the end of the first quarter.

The Hanon McKendry survey aims to quantify the draw of Super Bowl commercials among the more than 111 million anticipated viewers.2 Now in its eighth year, the survey has consistently found that over half of U.S. adult viewers planned to watch as much or more for the ads, with numbers ranging from 54 percent in 2009 to 57 percent in 2010 and 2007. 

(1) Viewers – Those U.S. adults who plan to watch Super Bowl XLVII.

(2) The Nielsen Company estimates that Super Bowl XLVI drew a record 111.3 million US viewers, up from 111 million viewers in 2011, making it the most-watched Super Bowl and most-watched single program of any kind in US television history.

Survey Methodology

The 2013 survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Hanon McKendry from January 7th to 9th, 2013 among 2,166 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and information on past surveys, please contact Amy LeFebre,

The Firms

Hanon McKendry is an integrated marketing communications firm that helps build brands that matter. Whether working with nonprofit organizations like Alliance Defending Freedom, Salvation Army, Focus on the Family and World Vision, or corporations like Rayovac Batteries, Furniture Row Shopping Centers, Wilsonart and Zondervan (a division of Harper/Collins), Hanon McKendry helps clients grow their impact and resources so they can do more good. Hanon McKendry is a Gravity Six Alliance partner. /  /   

Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us—and our clients—stay ahead of what's next.

SOURCE Hanon McKendry