Super Bowl Advertisements Score Big Online

comScore Networks, the leader in the use of the Internet to measure and understand consumer behavior, today released an analysis of Internet visitation and preferences related to Super Bowl XXXVIII. The analysis tracked game day Web visitation driven by the Super Bowl and related publicity stunts, such as the now famous Janet Jackson incident and the halftime on-field streaker. In addition, comScore’s third annual Super Bowl survey revealed this year’s most liked advertisements. Posts the Largest Game Day Jump

According to an analysis of site visitors on Super Bowl Sunday versus an average of the previous four Sundays, erectile dysfunction drug site had the largest gain of all major Super Bowl advertiser sites, rising nearly 1,900 percent above its average level.  Apple iTunes saw a nearly 600 percent jump in site traffic volume driven largely by a Pepsi promotion offering 100 million free songs through the pay-per-download music service.   

Just as was the case last year, automobile sites were prominent beneficiaries of Super Bowl related traffic spikes.  Dodge, which rolled out its new Magnum model, saw traffic to its site gain nearly 140 percent on game day.  Ford and Cadillac, both of which also promoted a number of high performance vehicles, drew 94 and 19 percent more visitors on Super Bowl Sunday than the previous four Sundays.  Beyond the automotive industry, jumped 72 percent driven by The American Legacy’s “Shards O’Glass” anti-tobacco spoof. 

“Aside from reaching an enormous audience, Super Bowl advertisers count on a buzz effect before, during and well past the big game,” said Peter Daboll, president and CEO of comScore Media Metrix.  “Year after year, our research finds that many Super Bowl advertisements drive immediate spikes in visitation that often pay dividends well past game day.” 

Top 10 Largest Gaining Advertiser Web Sites*

Percentage Change – Sunday, Feb. 1, 2004 versus Average of Four Previous Sundays

Total U.S. – Home, Work and University Locations

Source: comScore Media Metrix


% Change in U.S. Visitors:

2/1/04 vs. Avg. of

Four Previous Sundays


Apple iTunes










*Limited to sites with greater than 10,000 visitors on Super Bowl Sunday

TV Ads Drive Immediate Spikes in Web Visitation

A number of television advertisers’ Web sites posted dramatic spikes in visitation within minutes of the actual television advertisement airing: 

·          The number of visitors to grew by 240 percent as consumer curiosity was piqued by a direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertisement that was somewhat vague by design.

·          220 percent more visitors charged to the Dodge Web site after the automaker ran its advertisement for the 2005 Magnum.

·          Visitation to jumped approximately 200 percent above average shortly after the studio’s ad for “Troy” ran.

·          While Pepsi introduced its iTunes promotion early in the second quarter, it appears that many Internet users waited until halftime to explore the offer online.  Between 8:15 and 8:30 EST, visitation to was up more than 400 percent over the day’s 15-minute average.

· posted a 330-percent increase after airing a promotion for “Secret Window.”

Note:  Unless otherwise noted, all comparisons reflect increases in site visitors for the 15-minute period spanning each brand’s television advertisements versus average traffic in all 15-minute time blocks on game day.

Halftime Streaker Helps Propel

While some marketers chose $2.3 million 30-second television advertisements to reach the Super Bowl’s enormous audience, opted for a less traditional branding medium – the tattooed streaker.  Most of the debacle wasn’t shown on television, but many Americans quickly

learned of infamous British streaker Mark Roberts’ unplanned halftime entertainment.  Curiosity-seekers rushed to, pushing traffic 380 percent higher than average between 9:00 and 9:15 EST

Gambling Sites Draw Thousands on Super Bowl Sunday

While may have had the unique benefit of an on-field publicity stunt, it wasn’t the only gambling Web site to see significant Super Bowl related traffic growth.  According to comScore Media Metrix, the largest-gaining online casino site on Sunday was, with growth of more than 400 percent versus an average of the previous four Sundays.  Other top gainers included (240 percent) and (79 percent).

comScore Survey: Budweiser Takes the Crown for the Third Year Running

For the third consecutive year, Anheuser-Busch took the prize for the most liked Super Bowl advertisement in integrated research conducted by comScore Survey Solutions.  This year’s winning commercial featured a donkey joining Budweiser’s famous Clydesdale team.  More than 70 percent of respondents gave this ad the highest rating on a three-point scale and approximately 18 percent of respondents said the advertisement was their favorite of any Super Bowl promotion.  Moreover, more respondents recalled (unaided) Budweiser’s donkey-Clydesdale spot as the most memorable advertisement of this year’s game.

Anheuser-Busch’s Bud Light spots featuring a sleigh ride gone astray and beer-fetching dogs claimed the second and third spots with 14 and 9 percent of respondents that reporting that the ads were their favorites.  Overall, a comparison of this year’s Super Bowl survey to last year’s did not reveal a significant change in advertisement entertainment value.

Women More Likely to Watch for the Ads

As was the case in last year’s survey, females were significantly more likely to report that the advertising was the most interesting element of the Super Bowl experience.  This year, 37 percent of female respondents reported that they were primarily interested in the advertisements, versus 18 percent of males.

Internet Communication Tools Popular During the Game

Approximately one-third of survey participants indicated that they used the Internet during the Super Bowl or the pre- and post-game shows.  The most popular times to use the Internet were the pre-game and halftime show.  By far the most popular online activity among survey participants was Chat/Instant Messaging/E-Mail, with 41 percent of respondents communicating with friends and family using the Web.  The second and third most popular activities were visiting sports information sites and visiting advertiser sites, with 23 and 21 percent of visitors reporting that they engaged in these activities respectively.

Note:  A nationwide survey of households conducted by comScore beginning immediately after the Super Bowl and continuing through February 3, 2004.

Janet Jackson Dominates Top Gaining Searches

The biggest surprise of the Super Bowl was, to no one’s surprise, a major source of interest after the game.  Janet Jackson’s halftime revelation dominated the fastest gaining search terms on Monday, accounting for three of the top search phrases.  In fact, searches related to the now infamous incident accounted for an astonishing 50 percent of the total search volume among the top 200 search phrases.  With the exception of “Groundhog Day,” every one of the top ten gaining search terms was Super Bowl related.  Clearly, the Super Bowl and related “performances” were top of mind as Americans started their work week on Monday.

Top Gaining Search Terms Across Major Search Engines*

Percentage Change – Monday, Feb. 3, 2004 versus Saturday, Jan. 31, 2003

Total U.S. – Home, Work and University Locations

Source: comScore qSearch

Search Term

Percent Change

Janet Jackson and related searches


Halftime Show


Drudge Report


Groundhog Day


Lingerie Bowl




Super Bowl


Justin Timberlake


New England Patriots




*Includes grammatical derivations and closely related searches

Source: comScore Networks

Press Releases

NFL’s Marshawn Lynch joins Digital Trends Live to raise awareness for his nonprofit

PORTLAND, Oregon, December 10, 2018 -- NFL running back Marshawn Lynch is coming to Digital Trends Live for a special Thursday morning segment. Coming on the heels of Lynch’s 2018 Man of the Year Award nomination, the segment will center…

From DSLRs to mirrorless, these are the best cameras you can buy right now

From entry-level models to full-frame flagships, many cameras take great photos and video. The best digital cameras, however, push the industry forward with innovative sensors and improved usability, among other things. Here are our…

The hottest Nintendo Switch games you can get right now

The Nintendo Switch's lineup started off small, but games have steadily released as the console continues through its second year. Here are the best Nintendo Switch games available now, from Super Mario Odyssey to Fortnite.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.

Apple is spending $1 billion to hire up to 15,000 new employees in Austin

Apple has announced a series of expansions across the U.S. -- including a massive expansion to the company's Austin campus that will see it spending $1 billion to accommodate for up to 15,000 new employees.

Will Windows 95 be reimagined? Microsoft’s tweet hints at a throwback

The classic Windows operating system may just be getting a reboot of its own. Microsoft tweeted a cryptic message involving the Windows 95 logo and saying that it had a special announcement for its customers today.

Leave the laptop at home, the iPad Pro is the travel buddy to take on vacay

The iPad Pro is a powerful tablet that's perfect for creatives and professionals. How does it fare when traveling with it as a laptop replacement? We took it on a two week trek in Japan to find out.

Microsoft Surface Pro 6: Everything you need to know

The Surface Pro 6 is officially here, though it's not as big of a redesign as you might have hoped. With a new coat of black paint and an 8th-gen processor, this is a small update. If you've been eyeing a Surface Pro, you may want to wait…

Style up your MacBook Air with one of these great cases or sleeves

Whether you’re looking for added protection or a stylish flourish, you’re in the right place for the best MacBook Air cases. We have form-hugging cases, luxurious covers and padded sleeves priced from $7 to $130. Happy shopping!

Want to make one hard drive act like two? Here's how to partition in Windows

If you don't want all of your files stored in one place but only have one drive to work with, partitioning is your best way forward. Here's how to partition a hard drive in Windows 10, step by step.

Does Qualcomm's latest laptop processor hold up against Intel's Core i5?

Qualcomm has been nipping at Intel's mobile CPU heels for years and now it might finally have overtaken it. To find out whether it's new SoC can hold its own in mid-range computing, we pitted the Snapdragon 8cx vs. Core i5.

Not just for Lightroom anymore, Loupedeck+ now works with Photoshop

Loupedeck+ can now help photographers edit in Photoshop too, thanks to physical controls for swapping tools, running actions, and more. The photo-editing console expanded to include Photoshop in the list of compatible editing programs.

Turn your Raspberry Pi into a Steam streaming hub with Valve’s Steam Link app

Valve's Steam Link app is now fully supported by Raspberry PI hardware, meaning that just about anyone with a few dollars to spare can build their own Steam streaming box in a matter of minutes.

Amazon takes $300 off Intel Core i7 Surface Pro 6 in latest sale

If you're looking for savings on the Surface Pro 6, Amazon is the place to shop. It currently is discounting the Intel Core i7 variant of Microsoft's latest 2-in-1 by $300, though no Type Cover is included.