How brands can win the Super Bowl

By Mike BakoOpinionFOXBusiness

Super Bowl rings: Fun facts on cost, history and more

When the final seconds of Super Bowl LIII tick off the clock and either the Los Angeles Rams or the New England Patriots is crowned league champion, the process of creating their customized championship rings will begin.

Brady, Belichick, Gronk, Goff and McVay. Those are going to be the names that football fans will be glued to the screen watching during Super Bowl LIII on Sunday.

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But what about the game within the game of multimillion-dollar commercials and names like Jeff Bridges, Harrison Ford, Sarah Jessica Parker and Steve Carell?


Those are just some of the celebrities that will try to steal the spotlight from the action on the field by starring in a slate of commercials that this year will be more about selling the brand, than selling the politics of the brand.

Regardless of political stance, fans will be eating, cheering, watching and dissecting not only the game, but the commercials that cost a fortune to produce and air.

The teams will battle on the field while advertisers battle to see who will be remembered, who captured the social media buzz or worst of all, who will be forgotten before the game is even over.

NFL ratings have bounced back after two years of decline due to many reasons (take your pick from player safety, to national anthem controversy, to Colin Kaepernick being a national flashpoint) and, as a result, 100 million viewers are expected to tune in on Sunday.

Advertisers and brands are hoping that viewers want to put politics to the side for the game and cling to the predictability of celebrities and an overall theme of fun. Statement-making political ads that were seen during the last two Super Bowls from such companies as 84 Lumber, Toyota and Airbnb will instead be replaced by Chance the Rapper and Backstreet Boys dancing their way through a Doritos spot and the joyful return of Jeff Bridges in his role of The Dude from "The Big Lebowski" drinking a Stella Artois with Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie Bradshaw.

The Super Bowl remains advertising’s biggest showcase, and one of the last remaining ones that creates “water cooler” buzz the next day. The $5 million dollar spent for an ad, while astronomical, has the ability to fundamentally change the trajectory of a business.

At the end of the day, the brands that are the most successful in making a memorable connection are the ones that will really stand out during the Super Bowl.

Mike Bako is the Sports Editor of and is a frequent on-air analyst on sports business topics for FOX News, FOX Business and Reuters.