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During the first Super Bowl a half-century ago, Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi threw a fit when the second-half kickoff had to be done over. The reason? NBC held off returning to the game until after it aired a commercial for Winston cigarettes. It was an embarrassing moment but also a harbinger of things to come, as the game would become the single most important event in advertising.
Today, marketers are writing checks north of $5 million for 30 seconds of airtime.