Competitive Edge - Sports & Entertainment Marketing News

Super Bowl 2021: Why brands like Coke, Budweiser and Pepsi are benching their stars from in-game commercials this year


So why are so many all-star brands skipping one of the most-watched television events of the year? Their parent companies claim to be shuffling their playbooks for several reasons, such as reallocating their ad spending toward COVID-19 relief, or reevaluating the best way to use those millions as the pandemic continues to take an enormous human and financial toll.

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Discussion Questions:

  1. According to this story, why is Budweiser not advertising during the Super Bowl?
  2. Why do you think Pepsi opted against advertising during the game?
  3. What about Coke, Hyundai and Avocados From Mexico?
  4. Based on information from this story, are these brands sitting the game out for the same reasons?
  5. If you didn’t know in advance that some of those brands were not advertising during the Super Bowl this year, do you think you would have noticed?
  6. How do you think COVID-19 influenced the decisions that brands had to make about advertising during this year’s Super Bowl?
  7. What other factors, other than the pandemic, might have some influence on how brands approached their advertising strategy as it relates to this year’s Super Bowl? Be prepared to discuss your answers.
Chris Lindauer
After working for nearly a decade in professional sports, Chris Lindauer, formed Sports Career Consulting to provide unique sports business education opportunities in and out of the classroom. In the eighteen years (and counting) that followed, Chris has inspired thousands of students to pursue their passions and explore the career of their dreams. He currently lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife, two teenage daughters and their dog.


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