Two down, one to go: Sunday’s Academy Awards broadcast on ABC gives brands another chance to get in front of a live audience, following the Grammy Awards and Super Bowl. Of course, the Oscars brings nowhere near the audience of the Super Bowl, which drew 102 million viewers when you account for streaming.
But the Academy Awards, often dubbed “the Super Bowl for women,” has long been seen as a place ripe for luxury brands—with Cadillac and Rolex among the marketers that have regularly bought airtime in the show. They are back this year as official sponsors, along with Verizon and Google. Brands that will advertise in the broadcast also include McDonald’s, Postmates, M&Ms, Adobe, Colgate, Hulu, Intuit TurboTax and Microsoft, among others.
ABC saw increased demand from new entrants in the streaming video category and direct-to-consumer brands, says Jerry Daniello, senior VP-entertainment brand solutions for Disney Advertising Sales.
The alphabet network sold out the Oscars earlier this week, he says. And according to people familiar with deal making, ABC netted between $2.4 million and $2.6 million for a 30-second spot. By comparison, Fox hauled in as much as $5.6 million for 30 seconds for the Super Bowl. But ABC’s take marks an increase from last year, when the cost of a 30-second spot in the Oscars broadcast was $1.98 million, down 5 percent from 2018, according to Kantar Media.
This year, the Oscars will once again not have a host. The lack of host last year did not ding ratings: The show was able to bounce back from record low ratings in 2018, averaging just under 30 million people, which marks a 12 percent increase from the year prior.
Here's a look at what some brands have planned for Sunday—either during the ad breaks or in and around the show.
The General Motors-owned luxury brand plans to consume four minutes of airtime with several ads. The spots, by Leo Burnett Detroit, will debut a new campaign, called “Make Your Way,” aimed at linking the brand with people who have “unwavering self-determination,” according to a press release. The buy includes a spot custom-made for the Oscars, starring actress Regina King, for the all-new 2021 Cadillac Escalade. Below is another ad that will run, called “No Barriers.”