Super Bowl vs World Cup, Viewership & Value

Discussion in 'Business and Media' started by ctruppi, Feb 2, 2007.

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  1. ctruppi

    ctruppi Member

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    I know we see this around this time each year. I was listening to NFL Radio the other day where they said that the Super Bowl is the most valuable event in the sporting world (3x the World Cup or Olympics which are very close). This was based on ticket sales, tv revenue, ad revenue, etc. I'm wondering if this is correct. Is the fact that World Cup is only held every 4 years a factor in these calculations?

    If this is true it really is unbelievable considering that the Super Bowl is really only popular in 1 country (albeit a very large and wealthy country). But still, all of the rest of the world has to be equal in value for a sporting event as the USA alone!

    The other thing I heard yesterday (don't remember if it was NFL or ESPN radio) where they said that the Super Bowl is the most watched sporting event in the world. Now I truly have a hard time believing that the World Cup Final Match isn't seen by more people? Heck, just the viewership in France and Italy this past WC should put a big dent in the total global viewrship of an average Super Bowl.

    Is there any source that anyone knows of that can confirm these statements?


  2. Etienne_72772

    Etienne_72772 Member+

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    It's just American elitism and exceptionalism, that's all. These are numbers that are not easily disputed by anyone, and probably wouldn't be here in the US. There is just simply no way this is the most watched sporting event in the world. It can't be--not even close.

    I mean, you've got monks in Tibet rigging up tvs to watch the world cup final--the popularity of soccer in some of the world's most populous regions like China, for example, as opposed to American football, just logically dictates that the world cup final is bigger. I really, REALLY doubt you are getting even a blip of interest from most other countries. BUT--do I have any hard facts to back this up? No way, and I doubt anyone else does either.

    It all makes me shake my head and laugh, though.

    EDIT: I did a little bit of searching, and found a reference to the world cup final having double the viewership of the superbowl, but I don't know how accurate this is. In my search, I also found mention of the superbowl being the largest and most viewed annual sporting event, which may be true--but the point is that in every instance, the word "annual" is always tacked on.
  3. gosya

    gosya Member

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    As a single event, the Super Bowl may beat the World Cup final. Although the World Cup final is much more watched, dollar-wise, Super Bowl probably takes tha cake.

    Commercial TV revenue is probably the main differentiator, b/c there's just so many more commerical spots during a football game. And, obviously purchasing-power-per-viewer in Super Bowl is considerably higher than the World Cup final's (so, the price of an ad in Super Bowl is much more expensive, than even if add up all ads shown simulaneously around the world for Cup final). Don't forget - in many parts of the world TV advertising revenue is in its infancy.

    Additionally, it's hard to quantify commercial value-added the World Cup final (since it's part of a larger event) vs. Super Bowl where the value is just much more extrinsic. However, taken the event as a whole, it's no comparison - the World Cup trounces the Super Bowl.
  4. Etienne_72772

    Etienne_72772 Member+

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    I should have qualified my response above--I was talking merely about viewership alone. With regard to the commercialism of the superbowl, it probably is true that the superbowl is more valuable.


  5. crookeddy

    crookeddy Member

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    I tprobably doesn't make much of a difference since the World Cup is still bigger, but if you are going to compare the world cup as an event, you'd have to compare it to the entire NFL playoffs.
  6. Blitzz Boy

    Blitzz Boy Member

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  7. ctruppi

    ctruppi Member

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    I was specifically referring to the Final game of the World Cup in terms of viewership. As far as value, the World Cup tournament is sold as a pakage to sponsors so it's harder to differentiate the value of the single final match.
  8. RichardL

    RichardL BigSoccer Supporter

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    this seems to pop up every year.

    There is a claim that the superbowl is watched by an estimate of up to 1 billion people. This figure is economical with the truth is the same way that MLS' PR people let people infer that Beckham's salary would be $500,000 a week (or whatever it was), without actually making that specific claim.

    The truth of of was that this was an estimate of the number who could watch it if they wanted to (hence, "up to") rather than an estimate of the number they though would actually watch it. i.e. it is the number of potential viewers it is broadcast to.

    In reality, around 85% of the viewers for the superbowl were in the USA.


    The world cup final figure of 2 billion viewers is very similar.
  9. nyrmetros

    nyrmetros New Member

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    This is coming from Forbes magazine rating the Superbowl is the most expensive sports property, followed by the summer olympics, and then the World Cup.

    Forbes was only looking at 1 typical day for the olympics and WC, thus they took the average, wheras the Superbowl is a 1 off event anyway.

    The cost of tv ads for the superbowl is what they really care about.


    Forbes also said that the Daytona 500 is more valuable than the F1 Monaco GP. Forbes does not take a few things into account, such as the fact that Nascar actually owns the Daytona 500 facility. Monaco is a muunicipality, therefore the FIA can not take in ALL the profits associated with that event. The price of one of the yaughts docked off the track in the Bay over in Monaco probably costs just as much as the Daytona 500 revenue scheme.
  10. afowler2988

    afowler2988 New Member

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    Id take any Friendly Match any day over the Super Bowl.
  11. bbsbt

    bbsbt Member

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    What are some of you people smoking? Really?

    Last year's Super Bowl was watched by approx 100 million viewers... and 95mil were from North America. The rest were from outside N. America.
  12. bbsbt

    bbsbt Member

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  13. feyenoordsoccerfan

    feyenoordsoccerfan Member+

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    You are right to doubt that. For instance, over here in the Netherlands you can watch the Superbowl, so they count all the Dutch as viewers, but when you watch the television ratings for the spectator numbers for the best watched programms the Superbowl isnot even on the radar screen. The yearly number of viewers world wide for the Champions League final dwarfs that of the Superbowl and then I'm talking real viewers, not suck my thumb stats:D
  14. nyrmetros

    nyrmetros New Member

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  15. HSEUPASSION

    HSEUPASSION New Member

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    NFL Radio and ESPN (with huge money invested in the NFL) aren't exactly unbiased sources.

    That's like looking for an unbiased match report on manutd.com.

    They like to say "All of America will be watching" which isn't true, around 30% will be watching. In a country of 300m around 80m will watch.

    From the site posted eariler:

    2002 World Cup Final (1.3 billion viewers)
    2004 Super Bowl (95 million viewers)

    What may get cast aside in this is that fact that the World Cup final was held in Yokohama, Japan which doesn't make for prime viewing hours in most major cities. (inc. Munich and Berlin, Germany and Rio and Sao Paulo, Brazil the biggest cities of the countries in that WC final).
  16. tab5g

    tab5g Member+

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    more people watch the WC final than the SuperBowl.

    but more commercials are seen during the Super Bowl.

    in the US, the WC final in July2006 will likely have been seen by about one-tenth the number of people in the US who'll tune in for the Super Bowl in Feb07. but world-wide, the WC final is the much bigger tv draw.

    American Football (with 60 minutes of game clock spread across 3 - 3.5 hours) is the perfect marketable tv event.

    more people in the world are clearly interested in the WC final.

    more marketers and those wishing to sell their goods to the affluent US viewers might be interested in the NFL championship game.

    they both have loads of value. WC because it can be and is seen by many, many people in all parts of the world, and the SuperBowl because it is a US ratings sure bet and will present advertisers a big consumer-based audience (some of them eager just to watch the commercials).
  17. Jabinho

    Jabinho New Member

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    I don't remember who said it but maybe someone else remembers it being said but I believe last year during one of the Real Madrid/Barcelona matches, they said the worldwide audience was expected to be larger than for the Super Bowl .. No idea what the numbers were or usually are for that match myself..
  18. HSEUPASSION

    HSEUPASSION New Member

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    It would be interesting to see the viewership for the big derby and rivalry matches.

    Old Firm
    Milan derby
    Barca v Madrid
    Boca v River
    Liverpool v Man Utd
    Lazio v Roma
    Arsenal v Man Utd
    Juve v Milan

    Those games.
  19. scaryice

    scaryice Member

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    This has been debated before. The World Cup final is also not watched by a billion people. Interesting:

    http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview?id=574061
    http://blogs.rockymountainnews.com/denver/soccer/2006/07/abcs_ratings_for_the_final.html

    1. 2006 World Cup Final (300 million viewers)
    2. Euro 2004 Soccer Final (153 million viewers)
    3. 2004 Olympic Games: opening ceremony (127 million viewers)
    4. 2004 Olympic Games: closing ceremony (96 million viewers)
    5. 2004 Super Bowl (95 million viewers)
    6. 2004 Olympic Games: men's 100m metres (87 million viewers)
    7. 2003 Champions League (67 million viewers)
    8. 2004 Olympic Games: men's 200m freestyle swimming (66 million viewers)
    9. 2004 Formula One: Monaco Grand Prix (59 million viewers)
    10. 2004 Basketball: NBA finals (25 million viewers)
  20. bbsbt

    bbsbt Member

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  21. Drogo

    Drogo New Member

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    I remember them saying that 1 billion were watching the 2004 opening ceremony
  22. nyrmetros

    nyrmetros New Member

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    can't be accurate.
  23. Jabinho

    Jabinho New Member

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    I was thinking that if you just took 1/2 of the male population of the most soccer mad nations you'd end up with more than 300 million for the WC final..
    I've seen before and during pics of WC finals matches showing Brazilian streets totally deserted while the match was on.. I'd guess at least half are watching the match.. ;)
    Just using a few countries with conservative estimates you can total over 300m..
  24. Globalusation

    Globalusation New Member

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    that's such a lie. you're telling me if there was a friendly on tonight you would be watching that over the superbowl? I don't believe you.
    thats crap....80 million will watch? the whole nation watches. do you honestly know anyone who doesn't watch the superbowl? men, women, and children all watch it. I can't think of anyone who doesn't.

    the 90 million they come up with is an estimate based on tv ratings then they add a little I would assume since most view it with a bunch of people at a party. it's actually much more
  25. Jabinho

    Jabinho New Member

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    All 3 of my sisters.. My youngest sister's boyfriend... My niece and her husband...One of my aunts..I know many more who likely won't unless they are forced to watch and it's unlikely they will be..:D
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