With Pepsi out, NFL looks for someone to pay up to $50 million to sponsor Super Bowl halftime show

Pepsi Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show
Getty Images

Last Sunday’s Super Bowl halftime show was the tenth to carry the Pepsi name. For now, it’s the last.

As recently reported by Terry Lefton of Sports Business Journal, Pepsi will not be sponsoring the Super Bowl halftime show moving forward. Pepsi is expected to continue to be an NFL sponsor, along with its corporate kin of Gatorade and Frito-Lay. (Gatorade has been an NFL sponsor for 39 years.)

The rights to the halftime show are being pitched with an annual price tag of $40-50 million, with one of the factors being whether the brand already serves as a league sponsor. Contenders mentioned by SBJ include Verizon and Amazon.

Yes, that’s a lot of money for fewer than 15 minutes. But it’s a massive audience. Moreover, The Hollywood Reporter explained last year that the league is looking for ways to make the halftime show bigger than just the halftime show, “taking different aspects of it making it stand way outside of the 12 minutes.”

The extra content could include, for example, “documentary footage around the preparations for the show or behind-the-scenes access, or footage from dress rehearsals or bonus performances.” The bonus content would result in more engagement from fans and, in turn, more value for the sponsor.

Given the intent to expand the footprint of the show, it makes sense for the league to partner with a sponsor that can get the most out of the content. Pepsi can only do so much. Amazon or Verizon or some other purveyor of digital media can do everything.

49 responses to “With Pepsi out, NFL looks for someone to pay up to $50 million to sponsor Super Bowl halftime show

  1. For a lot of viewers the Halftime Show is usually the time for a bathroom break and preparing more snacks. I barely glanced at this year’s version.

  2. Perhaps they were unhappy to promote a show with no diversity (in both race and type of music) who’s two lead performers have songs about killing cops, with one currently under investigation for another sexual assault. I’d be unhappy if that’s what my $50 million bought.

  3. Eliminate it, useless and boring. Make it just like the regular season – quick analysis from the network studio group and back to the game.

  4. If they auction it off it will go for way more than $50 million. If someone like Verizon gets it, they’ll make a ton of money, and future years will get closer to $100 million and above.

  5. Halftime show this year was the only good one I’ve ever seen and I’m 44. Sorry that a certain demographic was so offended and outraged by it.

  6. Before they are done… they will be looking to somehow squeeze a football game in between 3 hours of a concert.

  7. I’ve refused to sit through these halftime displays of tastelessness and trash for years now. Get back to me when the NFL resurrects Count Basie and Ella Fitzgerald for halftime.

  8. Useless to real football fans. Useful for extra $$$ from non-football fans and fans of the act(s). It will not go away, unfortunately. Too much $$$ at stake….

  9. I can’t remember the last time I watched a halftime show. In fact, we actually turned the tv off this time in case Nielsen was really paying attention. Think of what 50 million dollars could do if it was put to good use.

  10. Hire Fleetwood Mac to play Tusk for 10 minutes and give us 7 minutes of serious game analysis, I mean, you remember, there’s an actual game going on.

  11. Put $50 million in perspective. It is basically Goodell’s salary for a year. So, in other words – it’s of little importance.

  12. Note to NFL: Your halftime show passed diminishing returns about 20yrs ago. More football. Less halftime show.

  13. Just bring back the marching bands and flag guard performers. The cost of tickets to the first Super Bowl were $12 which is about $100 in today’s money. At the rate we’re going, the actual game of football played during the Super Bowl is going to become an after thought to everything else.

  14. I won’t drink Pepsi after watching some of those bad halftime shows. It left a bad taste in my mouth.

  15. I tell you, the inconsequential things that get the loud minority riled up are simply amazing.

  16. The Pepsi I am drinking seems a little sweeter and has no bitter aftertaste after reading this

  17. Probably the worst & most unintelligible 1/2 time show I’ve ever seen….definitely not a family oriented event, but hey, if that’s what they were shooting for they nailed it!!!!

  18. Kind of think in these so saturated media advertising times … does anyone even notice who the advertisers are ??? … I mean I’m 62 and since being probably ten … I can truthfully say I’ve purchased two maybe three products because I saw it advertised somewhere or was on TV via a live sporting event or TV show although the state farm insurance commercials are worth the odd chuckle ….. : )

  19. How about having artists more people want to see.

    How about having artists.

  20. For $50M, you get “You’re watching the Pepsi halftime show”. Big deal. I’d spread my marketing elsewhere.

  21. I’m dumbfounded by the comments. I look forward to the halftime show every year. Some have been fantastic. I enjoyed this year’s performance. Having a bunch of aging rappers weren’t going to attract a younger audience, but it was still a good show.

    I’m surprised there isn’t also a big Super Bowl post-game performance. The Olympics have turned the closing ceremonies into a big production. Not doing a big show after the Super Bowl is a lost opportunity.

  22. The name attached to the half time show has never made me want to drink a Pepsi, buy a phone or shop online. Maybe the NFL needs to a little dose of reality. A lot of their fans are struggling to put food on a table, pay a mortgage and save for their kids to go to college, because they have to pay because their children are not star athletes who pretend to attend a school. Goodell’s salary is a slap in the face to humanity at large. He’s literally incompetent at his job from what we can see.

  23. That was a horrific Snoopy Bowl half time show. If you are going with performers of that low level of integrity, wouldn’t it have just been cheaper to bring in some prison band and let them sing violence against cops, women, and gays?

  24. I’m definitely NOT in the demographic they were aiming for this year, but I enjoyed the halftime show quite a bit. It at least was a coherent presentation and made sense as a whole. Not the usual “Maroon 5…with Nelly!” or whatever.

    And to everyone complaining – YOU are definitely not in the demographic they’re courting. As much as football fans don’t care about halftime (and really, I generally don’t care) the whole reason it exists is to bring in non-football fans.

    And of course the NFL will try to grow it and make it more of a spectacle, etc. And Goodell is NOT incompetent in the least! Look at how much dislike he draws from fans. He gets paid to be a scapegoat and keep as much attention as possible away from the owners, who are the “men behind the curtain”.

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