The Future of the Super Bowl

By BursonMarsteller, Special for  USDR

Fifty-five percent of viewers say they would be interested in streaming games online instead of watching on cable, including 77 percent of Millennials, according to a national survey commissioned by BursonMarsteller’s Fan Experience sports and entertainment specialty group, and fielded by research consultancy Penn Schoen Berland (PSB), to analyze viewers’ attitudes toward professional football, the Super Bowl and the halftime  show.

Super Bowl viewers’ perceptions of the game and how they consume content and communicate with each other on social media are rapidly changing due to advances in technology. In addition to the shift in viewers watching games via streaming online, 29 percent of viewers and 43 percent of Millennials say they would be more likely to cancel their cable subscription if they could stream professional football games  online.

“The ongoing transformation of the fan experience is just one instance of a global trend we are witnessing—across the board, consumers are being empowered by technology and demanding better, customizable content,” said Mike Fernandez, U.S. CEO, BursonMarsteller.  “The age of the one-size-fits-all content package is over, and the future belongs to the  fans.”

More than four in 10 viewers, and more than seven in 10 constant social media users (defined as viewers who check social media or news outlets more than once an hour via computer or mobile on a regular day) say that social media brings them closer to the game. Sixty percent of viewers and 87 percent of constant social media users say they are interested in the extra content brands provide on social media in addition to their commercials. Eighty-two percent of viewers and 89 percent of Millennials believe it is important for brands to demonstrate how they are giving back to their community in their Super Bowl commercials or marketing  campaigns.

“The game plan is shifting into the hands of the fan according to the findings of this year’s survey,” said Jason Teitler, Chair of Burson-Marsteller Fan Experience. “The different ways in which fans experience the Big Game, and engage with others about the game, provide a variety of opportunities for brands to develop lasting, productive relationships with consumers by delivering content and access that most appeals to  them.”


Let’s Get Social

  • Constant social media users are most likely to say they love watching the halftime show (71 percent vs. 58 percent of viewers)
  • One in three constant social media users say they will use social media more often during the Big Game than they usually do
  • One in three viewers say that a commercial is what they are most likely to post about on social media during the game
  • Thirty-three percent of viewers say that a commercial is what they are most likely to post about on social media during the game
  • More than 70 percent of constant social media users say that social media brings them closer to:
    • Pro football
    • Other pro football fans
    • Brands that advertise during the Super Bowl
    • The game itself

Virtual Reality

  • Forty-eight percent of viewers and 71 percent of fantasy football players say they would be interested in watching the Super Bowl on a virtual reality (VR) headset
  • Forty-three percent of viewers and 60 percent of fantasy football players say virtual reality is the future for experiencing professional football games

The Big Game

  • Nearly two out of three Millennials say they prefer the game itself to the commercials or the halftime show
  • Sixty-five percent of viewers say they remember last year’s game better than any other part of the broadcast
  • Seven in 10 total viewers (and nearly two in three Millennials) say that the game is their favorite part of the Super Bowl broadcast

“While the findings from this year’s survey demonstrate the huge role technology and social media are playing in how people view, interact and consume content, it will be interesting to track and see how fans actually view the game this year and interact with each other,” says Curtis Freet, CEO of Penn Schoen  Berland.

For more information click  here.

The findings described here are based on a survey conducted by Penn Schoen Berland (PSB) in partnership with BursonMarsteller and Fan Experience from January 18th-21st, 2017. The survey was conducted online among a national sample of N=1000 people who plan to watch the Super Bowl this year and who watched the Super Bowl last year. Additional information available upon  request.

About  BursonMarsteller
BursonMarsteller, established in 1953, is a leading global strategic communications and public relations firm. It provides clients with strategic thinking and program execution across a full range of public relations, public affairs, reputation and crisis management, advertising and digital strategies. The firm’s seamless worldwide network consists of 73 offices and 85 affiliate offices, together operating in 110 countries across six continents. BursonMarsteller is a part of Young & Rubicam Group, a subsidiary of WPP (NASDAQ: WPPGY), the world’s leader in communications services. For more information, please visit

About Fan  Experience
Fan Experience is a specialty group within BursonMarsteller’s U.S. Consumer and Brand Marketing Practice dedicated to helping brands build deeper relationships with key client audiences by engaging fans through sports influenced communications, marketing and events. The specialty implements campaigns for some of BursonMarsteller’s largest consumer, technology, health care and corporate clients locally and at some of the world’s largest and most influential sports events and venues. Fan Experience crafts programs “through the eyes of the fan” to ensure that brands deliver relevancy and value to a wide variety of audiences including consumers, business partners, employees, media and online  influencers.

About Penn Schoen  Berland
Penn Schoen Berland (PSB), a member of Young & Rubicam Group and the WPP Group, is a global research-based consultancy specializing in messaging and communications strategy for blue-chip corporate, political and entertainment clients. PSB’s operations include over 200 consultants and a sophisticated in-house market research infrastructure with the capability to conduct work in more than 90 countries. The company operates offices around the world, including in Washington D.C.New YorkSeattleLos AngelesDenverLondonHamburgMadrid and Dubai, which are supported by in-house field capabilities and fully equipped to provide the complete creative solutions PSB clients need. For more information, please visit

SOURCE  BursonMarsteller

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.