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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, February 8, 2010

Super Bowl sets record with 48 minutes of ads

AP Marketing Writer

NEW YORK — Think Sunday night’s Super Bowl seemed like it had a lot of ads?

You’re right. Commercials took up nearly 48 minutes of the game — the most for any Super Bowl.
Research firm Kantar Media said the amount of ads that aired on CBS was nearly 3 minutes longer than last year’s total, the previous record holder.
The game also had an unusual number of shorter, 15-second ads. Those let marketers spend less but still be in the advertising world’s biggest event.
Commercials typically come in 30-second blocks — which sold this year for between $2.5 million and more than $3 million. But Kantar says seven of this year’s 66 ads were just 15 seconds long. That’s the most since 2002.
Overall, commercials took up about a quarter of the 3 hours and 15 minutes that spanned kickoff to the end of the game, in which the New Orleans Saints beat the Indianapolis Colts.
Ads by companies including Anheuser-Busch InBev and Coca-Cola Co. took up more than 39 minutes, while the rest went to network promotions, including a memorable 15-second one with late-night show host David Letterman, his longtime NBC archrival Jay Leno, and talk show host Oprah Winfrey.
Anheuser-Busch was again the biggest advertiser in the game. The brewer had nine commercials that lasted 5 minutes, 30 seconds — half a minute more more than it had originally planned. Automaker Hyundai Corp. was the next biggest, with four ads for two and a half minutes.
There were plenty of new faces in the game this year, though not more than in previous years. Out of the 41 advertising companies, nine were first-timers, including video game maker Electronic Arts and Google.
The Internet search giant, which only rarely advertises on television, told an affecting story of a budding relationship through a series of Google searches, beginning with “study abroad” and “how to impress a French woman” and ending with “churches in Paris” and “how to assemble a crib.”