• Tue. Jul 23rd, 2024

Uber CEO Says Splurging On Celeb-Filled Super Bowl Ads Is Worth It

Uber CEO Says Splurging On Celeb-Filled Super Bowl Ads Is Worth It

David Beckham and Victoria Beckham
Uber Eats’ Super Bowl commercials this year feature David Beckham and Victoria Beckham, among other celebrities. Stephane Cardinale – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

Celebrity-filled commercials were all the rage during Super Bowl this year. Viral cameos from pop culture figures like Ice Spice, Jennifer Lopez, Ben Affleck and even Beyoncé felt back-to-back at times. One of the most glaring examples was Uber (UBER) Eats, whose ads featured Jennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, David and Victoria Beckham, Usher and Jelly Roll. 

It’s unclear how much Uber spent on producing the commercials. According to Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, those celebrities “cost a lot,” but they are “worth the investment and then more.”

“These big stars, they cost a lot, but they deliver a lot,” Khosrowshahi said on the Bloomberg Talks podcast on Feb. 7.

On top of the visibility provided by Super Bowl, which achieved a record high viewership this year, Khosrowshahi said the reach from the celebrities’ personal online followings helps with Uber’s marketing too. 

“They also use their own social platforms to amplify the message out there. So it’s not just the commercials, it’s about people talking about the commercials,”  Khosrowshahi said. 

Other companies seemed to be in agreement this year that the celebrity price tag was worth it. Super Bowl viewers saw popular brands being consumed by the likes of Kris Jenner, Judge Judy and the cast of Suits. The ad slots alone can cost $7 million for 30 seconds, so what’s a few million more for an A-list appearance? Dunkin’ reportedly spent $10 million just for Affleck to star in its Super Bowl commercial last year. 

Uber is throwing a lot into ad spend though, not only for the Super Bowl night, but for the entire year. In an interview with CNBC last week, Khosrowshahi Uber’s ads business is at an over $900 million annual run rate. 

“We bring a huge audience to both Uber Eats and Uber Rides,” Khosrowshahi said. “And advertisers are more and more interested in targeting those eaters and those riders.”

Digital celebrities also had their moment at this year’s Super Bowl. Influencer Addison Rae starred in a Nerds commercial that appeared onscreen, while other creators like Khaby Lame and Zach King made commercials for Super Bowl sponsor Pepsi on TikTok. While the rates are different for traditional celebrities, online creators don’t come cheap either. Fortune reported in 2022 that Lame got paid up to $750,000 for a post. And, according to Forbes, Rae made $6 million in 2023.

Uber CEO Says Splurging On Celeb-Filled Super Bowl Ads Is ‘Worth the Investment And Then More’

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