Ratings Roundup: Super Bowl XLVIII Edition

The final ratings numbers for Super Bowl XLVIII and the game was – not surprisingly – a record-setting success for rights-holders and non-rights-holders alike.

A Record-Setting Super Bowl on Fox
The Final average audience for Fox’s coverage of the game rang up 112.2 million viewers (up from 111.5 million initially reported), the largest audience for any television program in U.S. history. The household rating for Super Bowl XLVIII stands at 46.7 (up from the initial 46.4 fast national rating), ranking as the seventh highest rated Super Bowl ever. The game also earned a 69 share.

The Halftime Show featuring Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers drew 115.3 million viewers watching, surpassing the 110.8 million delivered by Beyonce last year and the prior record of 114.0 million set by Madonna two years ago. (Fast Nationals)

Spanish, Streaming Drive Fox Numbers Even Higher
Live coverage of Super Bowl XLVIII was also available in the U.S. on a Spanish language channel, FOX Deportes, for the first time ever and on digital platforms via FOX Sports GO and FOXSports.com. FOX Deportes averaged 561,000 viewers, the most-watched non-soccer sports event in Spanish cable history. The live stream averaged 528,000 viewers to become the most-watched live stream of a single sports event in history. The contributions of FOX Deportes and the new media outlets raise total viewing of the Super Bowl on an average minute basis to 112.6 million viewers. (Streaming information reported by Adobe Analytics.)

Kansas City Lead the Way
Locally, Kansas City led all markets with a 58.1/78, followed by Seattle (56.7/92, the market’s best Super Bowl performance ever), Indianapolis (53.9/74), New Orleans (53.2/72), Tulsa (52.9/71), Las Vegas (52.5/75), Portland (52.4/82), Knoxville (52.3/68), Jacksonville (52.0/68) while Denver (51.4/83) and Tampa (51.4/71) round out the Top 10.  Host market New York delivered a 50.5, its best Super Bowl rating since 1987 (Super Bowl XXI: Giants vs. Broncos, 53.4).

Pre- and Post-Game Also See Record Highs
The Super Bowl Pregame Show rose to a 12-year high by averaging a 12.0/22 and 23.1 million viewers from 2:00 PM to kickoff (6:33 PM ET).  Sunday’s 12.0/22 is a +20% improvement over last year’s 10.0/20 for CBS’s Super Bowl pregame, and pregame viewing peaked at a 31.1/52 and 68.4 million viewers from 6:00 PM ET to kickoff.

FOX’s prime time (7:00 – 11:00 PM ET) averaged 94.6 million viewers, the second most-watched night in FOX’s 27-year history (2/6/11, the night of Super Bowl XLV, 100.9 million viewers).  In addition to the Super Bowl itself, the Super Bowl post-game show (65.4 million) NEW GIRL (25.8 million) and BROOKLYN NINE-NINE (14.8 million) earned impressive numbers.

Social Media All Atwitter for Big Game
Social media was ablaze before, during and after Super Bowl XLVIII with 25.3 million total tweets composed by 5.6 million authors.  The most active moments during the game were Percy Harvin’s kickoff return for a touchdown to start the second half (429,000 tweets), the conclusion of the Bruno Mars/Red Hot Chili Peppers halftime performance (424,000) and MVP Malcolm Smith’s interception return for a touchdown (300,000). Following the game, activity about the Super Bowl peaked at over 500,000 tweets shortly after 10:00 PM ET.

North of the Border Numbers Skyrocket
The game was also the most0watched Super Bowl broadcast on record in Canada, with an average audience of 8 million viewers on CTV and RDS (CTV: 7.3 million; RDS: 610,000), according to preliminary data from BBM Canada. The most-watched television program of the past two years, the Seattle Seahawks’ commanding 43-8 victory over the Denver Broncos attracted more than 18 million unique viewers – or more than one-in-two Canadians (53%) – on CTV or RDS. In 2012, Super Bowl XLVI attracted 8.2 million viewers in Canada.

The Halftime Show on CTV and RDS peaked at nearly 10 million viewers during the highly-anticipated halftime show. It was the most watched Super Bowl on record in Vancouver, Calgary, and Edmonton. In the Vancouver market, fans showed their support for the Seahawks, with SUPER BOWL XLVIII growing 44% among A25-54 (to a 29 rating) and 33% among A18-49 (to a 27.2 rating) compared to last year.

Fox Sports 1 Reaps Benefits
Fox’s cross-platform coverage of the game also drove Fox Sports 1 to record highs. During Super Bowl Week, FOX Sports 1 attracted 1.7 million viewers who had not yet sampled it, the largest number of new viewers added since the week of 11/25/13. In addition, after the Super Bowl, Fox Sports Live averaged 282,000 viewers from 10:15 PM – 12:00 AM ET, setting a new Sunday night record and more than quadrupling its launch-to-date Sunday night average (64,000).  The first quarter hour of the program posted 380,000 viewers.

FS1’s other live sports telecasts throughout Super Bowl week also benefitted from the exposure. Thursday night’s FOX FIGHT NIGHT: GOLDEN BOY PROMOTIONS boxing event from Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn was the franchise’s most-watched to date, garnering 365,000 viewers, more than doubling its previous average (175,000). On Saturday (2/1), MONSTER ENERGY SUPERCROSS from Anaheim posted 439,000 viewers making it the most-watched Supercross event on FOX Sports 1 since launch. Georgetown’s 64-60 victory over Michigan State on Saturday (2/1) averaged 539,000 viewers making it the most-watched college basketball game to date on FOX Sports 1. The United States Women’s National Team’s 1-0 victory over Canada in the BATTLE FOR THE BORDER drew 249,000 viewers Friday night (1/31), a 23% increase over the previous USWNT match on FOX Sports 1 on Sept. 3 vs. Mexico (202,000).

NFL Network Blazes Through Super Bowl Week
NFL Network also had a big week courtesy of the big game. NFL Network averaged 175,000 viewers in Total Day and 226,000 viewers in Primetime during Super Bowl Week – up +20% and +31%, respectively, compared to last year making this the most-watched Super Bowl week ever on NFL Network. With more than 41 hours of Super Bowl coverage, SUPER BOWL LIVE averaged 141,000 viewers and up +60% over last year’s average audience (88,000 viewers).

On Super Bowl Sunday, NFL GAMEDAY MORNING averaged 657,000 viewers – up +10% over last year’s telecast (596,000 viewers), making this the most-watched NFL GAMEDAY MORNING ever. NFL Network’s postgame audience peaked from 10:30PM-11:00PM with an average of 1.14 million viewers, up + 25% over last year’s highest postgame peak (906,000 viewers). NFL Network averaged 313,000 viewers in Primetime on Super Bowl Sunday – up +52% compared to last year’s performance.

For the entire 2013 postseason, NFL Network averaged 148,000 viewers in Total Day – up +13% compared to last year’s performance (131,000 viewers) making this the most-watched postseason ever on NFL Network.

NFL Digital Gets Big Traffic From Big Game
The league’s digital properties also generated impressive traffic. For Super Bowl week, visits to NFL Digital Media properties increased 24% versus last year, bolstered by a 149% increase in visits to NFL Mobile.  Video Streams during Super Bowl week across all NFL Digital Media properties increased 56% versus last year (34.0M vs. 21.8M). Video consumption to NFL Mobile from Verizon reached 10.3M streams for a 416% increase over last year’s Super Bowl Week.

Unique users of NFL Digital Media properties rose 22% during the week versus last year (27.8M vs. 22.8M), driven by 88% growth in NFL Mobile Properties (11.2M vs. 6.0M). Seen in 195 countries, NFL Game Pass consumption grew 49% year-over-year across all devices and 57% on desktop.