Super Bowl drew highest ratings share in history -CBS

Mon Feb 4, 2013 11:54am EST

Feb 4 (Reuters) - The close Super Bowl contest between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers scored the highest rating share in history for the game, based on Nielsen's top U.S. television markets, CBS Corp said on Monday.

The game, which suffered a 35 minute delay due to a power outage, earned an average overnight household rating of 48.1 in Nielsen's metered markets, up 1 percent compared to last year's Super Bowl between the New York Giants and New England Patriots. CBS said the rating excludes the blackout that occurred between 8:45 PM to 9:15 PM. Nielsen's "metered markets" represent the top 56 U.S. TV markets.

The highest rated period during Sunday's Super Bowl occurred between 10:30 P.M.-10:45 P.M, when the game came down to the wire and the Ravens were able to hold off a furious second half comeback by the 49ers to win the game 34-31.

CBS plans to release the total number of Super Bowl viewers later on Monday. Last year, the game garnered a record 111.3 million viewers, making it the most-watched television program in U.S. history. The increase in ratings share will almost certainly result in an increase in total viewers when those figures are released later today.

The Super Bowl, which determines the NFL champion for the 2012 season, is broadcast live in more than 180 countries and in more than 30 different languages. The commercials during the game regularly net a record amount of ad revenue for the network that broadcasts the game in a given year.

Analysts said that standout commercials included Chrysler's Jeep ad featuring a patriotic salute to U.S. troops and narration by Oprah Winfrey, an Oreo ad asking viewers to vote cookie or creme, and a scantily clad male Calvin Klein model.

Bluefin labs, a firm that tracks social media activity, said that viewers produced 30.6 million social media comments, up from 12.5 million last year. The most talked about ad on social media was Dodge Ram Trucks "Farmer" commercial followed by Taco Bell's "Viva Young" spot featuring senior citizens behaving badly, Bluefin said.