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March Madness Early Rounds Generate $165M in Brand Exposure

  • In just the first week of March Madness, brands have already received millions of dollars worth of exposure.
  • NCAA official corporate partners and team apparel brands received the lion’s share.
Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY/Design: Alex Brooks

In just the first week of March Madness, brands have already received millions of dollars worth of exposure — and that’s not including commercials.

Between the men’s and women’s tournaments, companies received more than $165 million worth of “equivalent media value,” according to a study by Elevate Sports Ventures and Hive. 

That’s already just a few million shy of what Super Bowl LVI generated — significant considering the study was only conducted through Sunday and hasn’t yet counted Monday’s women’s games or the rest of the two tournaments.

NCAA official corporate partners and team apparel brands received the lion’s share of exposure. 

  • Nike earned more than other apparel brands, outfitting 69 of 134 teams.
  • NCAA partners received 38% of men’s tournament exposure and 30% of women’s.

The study found that the men’s tournament exposure had more value, but the women’s tournament offered more time — it averaged almost 20% more minutes of exposure during games.

Behind the Rim

One of the most valuable placements, according to the study, was the basket stanchion arm. Spalding, which had a spot there in both tournaments, earned more exposure time than any other brand.

State Farm and several other brands also got value from similar placement at the women’s tournament.

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