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Jax Daily Record Friday, Feb. 4, 201112:00 PM EST

Super Bowl XLV, Retailers win: Super Bowl spending expected to reach $10.1 billion

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from staff

Total Super Bowl spending is expected to reach $10.1 billion, reports the National Retail Federation.

The average consumer is expected to spend $59.33 on Super Bowl-related merchandise, apparel and snacks, up from $52.63 last year, said the federation, using a survey by its Retail Advertising and Marketing Association.

The association’s 2011 “Super Bowl Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey” was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the Super Bowl.

The survey was conducted by BIGresearch in a poll of 8,913 consumers conducted Jan. 4-11.

The federation reported that more people than ever will celebrate the game.

Of the 171 million people who will watch the game, the most in the survey’s history, nearly 34.9 million, or 15 percent, are planning to throw their own party, up from last year’s 31.6 million, it said.

Another 61.2 million, or 26.3 percent, plan to attend a party, also up from the 58.8 million who said they would attend a party in 2010.

“Getting friends and family together for a party is a great way to watch the Super Bowl, and with all of the planning and preparation that goes into throwing a good party, retailers have cause for celebration too,” said Mike Gatti, executive director of the association.

He said it was one of the most popular times of the year to buy new televisions.

Also, of people who plan to watch the game, at least 4.5 million plan to take advantage of retailers’ promotions and buy a new television, compared to the 3.6 million who said they would last year, and the 2.7 million who said they would in 2009.

The federation reported that grocery, apparel, electronic, sporting goods and home furnishing stores can all expect to see a share of Super Bowl-related spending.

That’s because 69.5 percent of sports fans intend to head out to buy food and beverages, 7.3 percent will buy team apparel or accessories, 6 percent will pick up decorations and 2 percent will acquire furniture or an entertainment center.

Of the millions of people planning to tune in Feb. 6, nearly half, or 47 percent, say the game itself is the most important part.

Over one-quarter, or 25.8 percent, watch for the commercials, 19.5 percent enjoy being with friends, and 7.7 percent say the halftime performances are most important.

“With millions of people getting together to watch the game every year, advertisers plan and prepare meticulously for this annual opportunity to reach and engage viewers with bolder and more effective ways,” said Phil Rist, executive vice president of strategic initiatives at BIGresearch.

“With over a quarter of viewers saying the commercials are the most important part, it’s clear the Super Bowl isn’t just about football,” he said.

As for the game-watching experience, 74.9 percent of viewers say they see the commercials as entertainment. Some viewers aren’t as keen, with 17 percent saying advertisers should save their money and pass along savings to shoppers and 9.5 percent saying it makes the game last too long.

The survey found 17.4 percent admit the commercials make them aware of the advertisers’ brand. Another 7.7 percent say the commercials influence them to buy products from advertisers.

The survey also found that young adults are more likely to be influenced by commercials, with 15.4 percent of 18-24 year-old viewers agreeing that the commercials influence them to buy products from the advertisers.

Among other age groups, the numbers drop, with 11 percent of 25-34 year-olds, 7.3 percent of 35-44 year-olds, 5.7 percent of 45-54 year-olds and 5.5 percent of 55-64 year-olds saying they are influenced by the ads.

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