Super Bowl 58 Expands to New Audiences

By Henley Worthen · February 16, 2024

Super Bowl 2024 has emerged as the most-watched US TV broadcast since the historic Moon landing in 1969. 

CBS Sports reported an impressive 123.4 million average viewers across multiple platforms, including CBS, CBS Sports, Nickelodeon, and Univision, and digital platforms Paramount+ and NFL+.

2024’s viewership marked a 7% increase from 2023. The presence of Taylor Swift at the event, supporting her boyfriend Travis Kelce, likely contributed to the heightened excitement and overall increased viewership during the live game. Other factors such as Nickelodeon’s family-oriented broadcast also contributed to the 7% growth.

Although opinions differ on the precise impact of Swift’s presence, a poll conducted by consumer research firm Numerator revealed that 20% of Super Bowl viewers were rooting for the Chiefs, driven by the singer’s very public relationship with Kelce.

Expanding Audiences with Nickelodeon 

This year marks the debut of the Big Game being broadcasted on Nickelodeon. The aim was to involve kids and families in the game through animated cameos by SpongeBob and Patrick Starr, slime dripping down the screen upon a touchdown, and Dora the Explorer explaining game rules.

This kid-centric programming presents a fun and interactive approach to educate children about football, using familiar characters and colorful animations. The experience is geared to parents as well as kids, adding a playful twist to the most anticipated game of the year. Overall, the NFL and CBS Sports were putting in the extra effort to nurture an up and coming generation of sports fans.

In the first day of posting, 2 of the Top 10 Most Engaged Videos on social were related to Nickelodeon’s Super Bowl coverage, highlighting its impact on growth in viewership and engagement.

Posted by a creator:

1.6M engagements in the first 24 hours after posting

Posted by the NFL:

1.2M engagements in the first 24 hours after posting

Most Engaged Halftime Videos: Long-Form Form Content Wins Big

Usher’s half time performance owned 3 of the Top 10 Most Engaged Videos within the first 24 hours after posting. 

The #1 Most Engaged Video on social is a lengthy 10 minute video of Usher’s full performance.

The full length video brought in 14.8M views and 1.6M engagements within the first day of posting.

Similar to in 2023 when Rihanna’s performance claimed the top spot as the #1 most engaged video dominating YouTube. Among the remaining two videos in the top 10, both featured clips of Usher’s surprise guest performer, Alicia Keys. In the past, short-form content was king. But splicing longer segments like half-time shows into shorter clips deteriorates the entire story. 

In addition to these musical highlights, other noteworthy clips included Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce at the Super Bowl after party, where they were spotted singing along to Taylor’s songs in the club.

Notably missing from the top engaged social videos? The commercials.

The fact that most engaged videos excluded commercials which are typically very popular suggests a shift in viewer preferences towards more interactive and dynamic content during the Big Game. The focus on live performances and spontaneous moments resonated more strongly with the audiences, eclipsing the traditional allure of coveted Super Bowl commercials.

New Types of Commercials

This year, it costs a cool $6.5-7 million dollars for a 30-second ad slot. While we saw many of the traditional Super Bowl advertisers return to the screen, there were also a few newcomers from the skin care & beauty industry like Cetaphil and e.l.f. which tells us the NFL has a growing female audience.

One of the most viewed Super Bowl commercials might have been originated by a TikTok influencer. 

The battle of brands and influencers. One controversy occurred when a creator claimed that a brand copied her original video and idea. There were several uncanny similarities between the TikTok creator, Sharon Mbabazi, and the Cetaphil commercial. Parallels include that the main characters were a mixed race daughter and a white stepdad, the gifting of a Taylor Swift #13 jersey and the two doing skin care together.  

Certainly, the concept for the commercial was powerful, tapping into the Taylor Swift Effect, skin care, and more. It was a win for the brand— until the TikTok creator and her stepdad shared their reactions online. 

Celebrity & Creator Cameos 

As is tradition, the Super Bowl 58 boasted many cameos from Hollywood’s most famous faces.  Ben Affleck and Matt Damon participated in Super Bowl advertising thanks to Dunkin, while Jennifer Anniston and the Beckhams filmed ads commercials with Uber Eats. 

This year, however, we also saw some of social media’s most famed creators, like Benny Drama (aka Benito Skinner) famous for his impressions and humor. Benny was featured in the e.l.f Cosmetics commercial, “Judge Beauty”. The creator was an out-of-the-box choice by e.l.f., so we dove into the Tubular data to see how much Benny aligned with the brand. 

According to Tubular data, Benny Drama was an excellent pick for e.l.f.:

  • Benny has a 75-80% female audience – with the highest demo coming in at 25-34 years old
  • Audience Also Watches revealed that Benito Skinner’s TikTok audience is 124.8x more likely to watch videos about Face Makeup (39% audience overlap)
  • Consumer Insights revealed that over the past 6 months, Benito’s social viewers across platforms were 13x more likely to shop for Face Makeup on Amazon

Beyoncé partnered with Verizon and used the ad to promote her newest creative venture— country music! Her latest album, Act II, was announced during the Super Bowl. The Texas native is going back to her southern roots and pre-released two singles: Texas Hold ‘Em and 16 Carriages. In her attempt to “break the internet” with Verizon, she did cause quite the uproar and excitement on social media. The day after the Superbowl, TikTok uploads about Beyoncé saw a 137.8% increase and a 133.4% increase on Instagram.

In fact, TikTokers have already taken the song, Texas Hold ‘Em, and turned it into a dance craze.

On February 13, the song amassed over 40M TikTok views on videos featuring the sound. These are huge numbers to see just 3 days after dropping the tune. 

Undoubtedly TikTok has a way of promoting music and increasing audience engagement with songs. Makes us wonder what will happen next in the continuing discrepancy between UMG and TikTok after they recently pulled their entire library from the app.

While Beyoncé has built her incredible career around R&B Hip-Hop, Tubular data reveals that Country Music is a viable option that will surely resonate with her audiences. In fact, Beyoncé’s YouTube audience is 8.9x more likely to also watch Country Music Videos. Almost 40% of her YouTube audience overlaps with the country music genre. 

The 2024 Super Bowl brought new innovations for audience expansion. Celebrities like Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, and Spongebob are blending together traditionally polarized groups – R&B meets country, Swifties meet NFL. Uncover more Tubular data about how Travis Kelce is becoming a highly coveted crossover star.

Simultaneously, social media creators are taking center stage in Super Bowl ads alongside Hollywood celebs. This is a testament to the changing dynamics of fame and audience targeting. No longer confined to traditional celebrity avenues, influencers are reshaping the narrative of entertainment. 

This Super Bowl revealed just how much the boundaries between categories and disciplines are becoming increasingly porous. This new, hyper-entangled world of media offers audiences a richer, more customizable viewer experience. It also allows publishers to reach more audiences than ever before and experiment with new advertising strategies. 

Want to learn more about Tubular and the social video insights we covered? Request a demo.

Source: All data is sourced from Tubular Intelligence as of 2/15/24 unless otherwise noted.

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