The mega-budget and star-studded ads that run during the Super Bowl are almost as hyped as the big game itself, but for years they were something that Canadians couldn't take part in due to CRTC policies about only showing Canadian ads on Canadian TV. That all changes this year with a new policy that will end the substitution of U.S. ads for Canadian ones during the big game. That means that if you watch the game on CTV you'll get Canadian ads, but if you watch the game on Fox you'll be able to see the famous Super Bowl ad lineup in all its glory.
The CRTC has made the exception for this one event, with many speculating that other television events such as awards shows could follow suit. While it's an exciting prospect for viewers who have been left out of the fun for years, it's a sensitive subject for industry folks. For one thing, substituting U.S. ads for Canadian ones keeps ad dollars within our country and is estimated to generate about $200 million annual for domestic broadcasters. Bell even referenced the new ad substitution policies when announcing a series of staff layoffs this week.
There's another group besides viewers who will definitely be happy about the changes, however: the U.S. advertisers who pour millions of dollars into a few minutes of airtime in hopes of catching consumers attention. Expect big spends and splashy production from brands like Pepsi, Old Spice and Budweiser, who had one of the most popular advertisements of all time in 2014 with its "Puppy Love" ad that aired during Super Bowl XLVIII.