New Competitors Take on Advertising During the Big Game

The COVID-19 pandemic has touched all aspects of our daily lives. The sports world is no different. All of the major sports leagues have taken unprecedented steps to create a stage to showcase their sports. Now the biggest stage in sports, the NFL championship game, is being affected by financial uncertainty. The uncertainty has many large corporations worried, as many advertising giants are pulling their ads to reallocate funds somewhere else. 


Who is Pulling Out?

Budweiser is following the lead of Coke, Pepsi, and many more in pulling their annual NFL championship advertisements. Why will we not see the iconic Clydesdale horse making an unlikely friendship with a puppy this year? Budweiser’s plan is to “reallocate the media investment” to raise awareness for the COVID-19 vaccine. This move has already generated some positive PR for the brand. Pepsi, on the other hand, will shift its commercial advertising budgeted to their halftime show sponsorship. Coca-Cola, arguably the most recognizable brand in the world, pulled their ad spend to focus on “investing in the right resources during these unprecedented times.”


Why Are They Pulling Out?

So, what is the common thread between these commercial giants? The answer is simple: the COVID pandemic has forced many folks, even the largest corporations in the world, to rethink how they approach things. Some companies are reallocating resources to spread COVID awareness, while others are finding more efficient ways to spend their dollars. With these companies pulling out, however, the door has been left wide open for some championship-advertising newcomers to compete.


A New Opportunity

With all of these brands pulling out, it opens up opportunities for some companies who, in the past, would not have had the opportunity. According to Ad Age, companies like Chipotle, DoorDash, Huggies, and Mercari have made ad buys and will be making their championship debut. By no means are these companies small, but it is still a marketing opportunity for these companies with the previously mentioned businesses stepping aside. 

The NFL title game has produced some of the most iconic moments, unlikely heroes, and exciting storylines, even in the world of advertising. Just because the COVID-19 pandemic has forced many corporations to pull their television advertising spend, doesn’t mean we won’t see some unlikely businesses rise to the occasion. So, as you sit with your favorite snack and ice-cold beverage to find out who will be crowned NFL Champion, don’t dismiss the commercials. After all, commercials have always been part of what makes the game special, and with these newcomers, it will be no different.


ABOUT THE AUTHORMattDaprile_Headshot

Matt Daprile is a full-time Digital Account Coordinator at 898 Marketing. As a Digital Account Coordinator, Matt is responsible for implementing digital marketing software, data tracking, and digital campaign management for 898 Marketing and our clients. Matt is a Poland, Ohio native, and holds a Bachelor of Arts and Sciences in Communications from The Ohio State University.