Super Bowl attracts record audience

LOS ANGELES — A U.S. record 111.5 million people watched the Seattle Seahawks’ 43-8 blowout win over the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl on television, Fox said.

The Feb. 2 game at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., was seen in an average of 46.4 percent of U.S. television households, Fox Sports said Monday in an e-mail, citing Nielsen. That matched CBS’s 2013 telecast.

The annual National Football League championship is routinely the most-watched event on U.S. television, with last year’s matchup drawing an audience of 108.7 million. This year’s broadcast of the three hour, 25 minute game eclipsed the record of 111.3 million viewers set by the 2012 Super Bowl, according to Nielsen.

The showdown pitted the Seahawks, with the No. 1 defense in the league, against the Broncos’ top-rated offense. It was the first time in five years that the No. 1 seed from each conference met for the Lombardi trophy.

Advertisers including at least seven automotive brands paid an average of $4 million for 30 seconds of air time, along with as much as $2 million to produce their commercials, according to Kantar Media. Carmakers as a group were the single biggest sponsors for the third straight year.

The Super Bowl halftime show, featuring Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, attracted 115.3 million viewers, Fox said, topping the 110.8 million who tuned in last year for Beyonce and the 114 million Madonna attracted two years ago.

The Spanish language channel Fox Deportes averaged 561,000 viewers, which Fox said was the largest for a non-soccer event in Spanish cable history. The streamed telecast also set an audience record for a single sports event, Fox said.

Separately, Nielsen said the game generated 25.3 million tweets from 5.6 million unique users of the Twitter microblogging service, reaching a unique audience of 15.3 million people. Total tweets fell from 26.1 million a year earlier.

The most-tweeted ad was a commercial from Allstate’s Esurance unit featuring actor John Krasinski offering Twitter users a chance to win $1.5 million, the amount the auto insurer said it saved by buying its spot after the game concluded.

Nielsen said 1.22 million Twitter users sent out 1.85 million messages with the #EsuranceSave30 message need to enter the sweepstakes. The winner will be announced Feb. 5 on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on ABC.


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