Spanish-Language World Cup Ads Nearly Sold Out: NBCU

NBCU Telemundo World Cup
(Image credit: NBCU Telemundo)

Commercials in Spanish-language coverage of the World Cup are nearly sold out, NBCUniversal Ad Sales and Partnerships President Mark Marshall said.

NBCU will be broadcasting 64 World Cup matches live from Qatar on Telemundo and streaming them on Peacock, with early round matches available free to viewers, while later games will be available to paying subscribers.

Marshall said national and local ad sales are pacing well ahead of the previous World Cup.

"With just under two weeks to go, NBCUniversal and Telemundo, we only have a handful of units remaining for this year’s World Cup," he said. "We’ve not only surpassed our record 2018 revenue, we’ve also exceeded all of our current 2022 revenue goals."

NBCU has signed up three major cross-platform sponsors, with Ford presenting pre-game shows, T-Mobile owning the halftime show and Coca-Cola having title on the post game show. (NBCU will not be interrupting the action to show traditional TV spots during matches).

Mark Marshall NBCU World Cup

Mark Marshall

Marshall also said that NBCU has signed up more than 20 new advertisers for this year’s World Cup, with growth in categories including auto, retail, quick-serve restaurants and technology.

Advertisers including Volkswagen, Samsung and parent company’s Xfinity brand will be running customized creative executions developed with NBCU.

Volkswagen, for example, will have special content showing stars from Telemundo programming riding in electric-powered Volkswagen ID4 SUVs across America.

Xfinity will have a special virtual studio that enables fans in Qatar to connect with people back home.

“With sales this strong, we’re already in conversations for next year’s women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in 2023,” Marshall said.

Marshall noted that the World Cup was an ideal venue for appealing to Hispanic consumers, who now represent about 20% of the U.S. population and about $2.8 trillion in economic activity.

“Brands now are realizing that speaking to U.S. Hispanic consumers is no longer a choice. It’s a necessity,” Marshall said. “The World Cup is the ultimate place for brands to reach and engage this audience.”

Also: Tubi and Fox Sports Launch Channel Dedicated to FIFA World Cup

Hispanic audiences are young and connected, which is why NBCU is streaming games on Peacock. NBCU believes that soccer -- or futbol -- is more fun to watch in Spanish, and that with Fox not having a subscription streaming outlet, some English-language viewers might choose Peacock or Telemundo.

In particular, on November 26, Fox will be putting World Cup games on cable to accommodate the Michigan-Ohio State college football game. ■

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.