This year, million Super Bowl viewers it will be for the first time hit with commercials of cryptocurrencies and online sports betting, two emerging markets for people who love throwing money at risk investments.
They will all make the same promise: that you, yes you, are much smarter than those suckers who don’t make quick and easy money.
These ads will air between quarters, between plays and as long as the National Football League can include them when the Cincinnati Bengals take on the Los Angeles Rams. The framing of these commercials will differ, but they all make the same promise: yes you You, they are much smarter than those fools who don’t make quick and easy money. If even a fraction of the 100 million expected Super Bowl viewers open their wallets in response, these companies stand to make a small fortune in exchange for the vast majority of newly minted moguls.
In both industries, the companies involved require new users to grow. That quest for fresh blood has at least two cryptocurrency exchanges and two online sports betting companies shelling out as much as $7 million for 30-second ad space for this year’s championship game. By doing so, Crypto.com and FTX Trading Ltd. hope to attract people who have not yet bought into the Bitcoin hype, Bloomberg News Explained:
With Bitcoin now more than a decade old, cryptocurrencies may have exhausted their market for early adopters, said RA Farrokhnia, a professor at Columbia Business School.
“For these companies that provide some fundamental services, mainly exchanges or those that allow you to create a wallet, to grow, they need more volume,” said Farrokhnia, who is also executive director of the university’s fintech initiative. “You have to convince consumers to start entering this ecosystem.”
Attracting new investors is also crucial considering that many of the Major cryptocurrencies have plummeted in value. in recent months. Super Bowl ads are essentially a doubling down on the industry, as “$112.9 million has been spent on national crypto-related ads since the beginning of 2020,” reported Bloomberg News. Crypto.com has only spent $65 million on its campaign with Matt Damon. Washington Post writer Sonia Rao summed it up perfectly. how fucking weird Damon’s tone is when you stop to consider it:
His one-minute ad for Crypto.com, the company that gave the Staples Center its name, frames cryptocurrency investing as a holy crusade. YouTube’s description of him paints Web3, the vague concept of a decentralized, blockchain-based World Wide Web, as our inevitable future. “Fortune favors the brave,” utters the actor, tracing the proverb back to the ancient Romans.
Damon is a storyteller by trade; His job, in many ways, is to sell ideas to the public. But many found it ridiculous and disturbing that a man with such deep pockets would place himself on an equal footing with the average viewer, as he does by referring to historical figures as “mere mortals, like you and me,” before encouraging them. directing his money toward what his grandiose calls for courage imply is a risky investment.
Damon isn’t alone among the celebrities working to convince average Americans to join them in the cool fun totally not a scam world of crypto investment. Adding a glamorous appeal to what is essentially speculation is crucial to the burgeoning forex market and adjacent industries such as trade non-fungible tokens. The value of NFTs and cryptocurrencies increases only according to demand and perceived scarcity, and the demand for an imaginary good has to come from somewhere. Hence Damon’s awkward shilling and The shameful promotion of Paris Hilton for a six-figure token connected to a rather hideous drawing of a monkey. “Don’t be left behind,” they seem to say, “invest in tulips today and join your peers among the other rich geniuses of the world.”
Meanwhile, after decades of opposing gambling as a moral evil that will bring down the noble sport of football, the NFL has had a real moment on the road to Damascus this season. However, instead of a message from on high, the league has heard the siren song of $1 billion in potential revenue for the league and its teams for the next decade. As a result, the NFL now has partnered with seven sports betting housesallowing them to place ads that run during games.
This conversion was made possible by a Supreme Court ruling three years ago that allowed states outside of Nevada to allow betting on sports, leading to a surge in digital sportsbooks. Sports betting is already legal in 30 states, and the digital betting markets have been busy offering what they are essentially throwing in as free money for first-time customers all season long. If you’re in one of the major markets where gambling was recently legalized, like New York, chances are you’ve been absolutely bombarded with these “first hit is free” appeals for months.
All of which brings us to the Super Bowl, a matchup where 18.2 million people are expected to place bets either online or in person, according to the American Gaming Association. That’s not a silly change, and gaming companies want to make sure Americans maintain the same energy through the offseason and into the fall. Both Caesars and DraftKings plan to run ads during the big game, according to Sports Legal Report. FanDuel also launched a new ad campaign last week before kickoff, but it won’t be airing it during the game.
There is something in this moment that feels eerily similar to the 2000 Super Bowl, when a large number of online businesses first bought ads. At the height of the soon-to-burst dot-com bubble, the commercials those companies ran online were as much about flexing financial strength as attracting new customers. That wasn’t a huge allocation of resources for those 14 companies, just four of which are still currently active.
The same fate could easily befall any of today’s crypto and gaming companies. Ironically, the marketing investments we are seeing are themselves a gamble with no guaranteed payout in the end. In both markets, huge amounts of income are being diverted into these efforts, leaving me concerned about how desperate businesses may become if even greater cash flows are needed to offset this wave of spending.
That money will have to come from the wallets of people who are drawn to the most American dream: getting rich overnight, having gambled big at just the right time. There are few protections for the losing crowd chasing this fiction being sold to them, with a lack of strict regulations making it easy for these companies to siphon off millions of dollars with virtually no control.
Both the crypto markets and sports betting depend on more people losing than getting rich to survive. The only difference between the two is transparency: at least when you bet on the Rams or Bengals, they tell you the odds of winning up front.