A PAID INTERMISSION

What’s better than a 30-second television spot during the Super Bowl? How about producing and sponsoring the game’s halftime show?
That’s the enviable position the Walt Disney Co. found itself in last Sunday, delivering
nearly 11 minutes of brisk musical entertainment for online broker E*Trade, which sponsored the top-rated event.
The National Football League separately contacts companies for sponsorship and production of the halftime show, explained Ken Potrock, Disney’s vice president of alliance marketing.
E*Trade is not afforded any creative input in the show. Its only involvement is having its company name announced every time the halftime program is mentioned. The online broker also buys into a package that includes broadcast and outdoor advertising mentions.
How much is the intermission program worth to the company, compared to the $2-3 million it costs for a TV commercial during the Super Bowl? Everybody’s mum. –T.W. Sieber