CBS seeing $150M
Super Bowl Sunday and 'Survivor II' have top brass dreaming of golden ratings and revenue
By Richard Tedesco -- Broadcasting & Cable, 11/5/2000 7:00:00 PM
CBS is expecting a big Super Bowl Sunday, to the tune of more than $150 million in ad sales, as it also reels in sponsors for Survivor II.
The inventory for both the Super Bowl and the son of Survivor is 80% sold, according to CBS Network Sales President Joe Abruzzese, who expects the Super Bowl to be 90% sold by Thanksgiving. CBS already has reason to give thanks, selling 30-second spots for $2.3 million or $2.4 million each, he says.
So CBS expects to top the $130 million ABC took in on the big game last January at $2.2 million per spot and approach the $155 million FOX pulled in with an all-day Super Sunday extravaganza in 1999. "If you add in Survivor, we'll surpass what ABC did," says Abruzzese.
For Survivor II, CBS is pushing $12 million sponsorship packages, according to ad agency sources. Most of the inventory will go to those sponsors, including such notables as Anheuser-Busch, General Motors, Target, Pepsi, Frito-Lay, Visa and Reebok.
In an age of fragmented TV viewing, the Super Bowl looms larger than ever, topping other big sports events. "In today's compressed-time society, viewers are opting out of the long-time commitments for the Olympics or the World Series," says John Rash, senior vice president at Campbell Mithun Esty. "The Super Bowl is only four or five hours, and it's become an unofficial national holiday."
Last January, it was also an unofficial platform for emerging dotcoms making a splash with pricey spots. Today, nose-diving Web stocks are producing a different picture: CBS has sold Super Bowl time to only six dotcoms thus far and expects 10 to be in the mix, compared with 19 last January.
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