The 2021 Super Bowl SMS Playbook

2021 has been anything but uneventful. And it’s only January! Really soon all eyes will turn to the United States once again, for the most anticipated sports event of the year - the 2021 Super Bowl! 

On February 7 millions of people will tune in to watch the glorious rivalry game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. But the Super Bowl is so much more than football, music and hot wings… 

Whether you're a true football fan, or you are more interested in the spectacle on the half time - the real winners of this day are... the brands. Those brands that manage to come up with a really creative idea, or that are able to spend millions of dollars for 1 second TV spot. Those brands that will grab the attention of the audience and position their products as the go-to choice during Super Bowl week.


2021 Consumer Spending Trends

With the ongoing global pandemic, it is not a surprise that the majority of people won’t be having a family or friends get-together - a tradition that goes as further back as the first ever Super Bowl in 1967.

According to the NRF, in 2021 186.6 million US adults plan to tune in for the big game and 86% of them claim they plan to make purchases to mark the occasion. Even much lower compared to previous year, the total consumer spending in the US is expected to hit $13.9 billion in total or $74.55 on average

It should come as no surprise that Food and Beverages is the most popular product category around the Super Bowl, with the astonishing share of 77%. It is followed by Team Apparel/Sports Equipment (11%), TVs (9%), Decorations (7%) and Furniture (5%).

And as Prosper VP of Strategy Phil Rist once said: “The big game is a day for big spending regardless of who plays or wins.”


SMS During 2021 Super Bowl: A Totally Different Ball Game

What if we told you that you can achieve great results and significant boost in sales without spending big budgets on TV ads? 

People will be at home, watching the game… and will be in the mood to shop. Why not send them a short and timely text message with an offer they can’t resist?

Check out some of the main reasons why using SMS as a preferred marketing channel around the Super Bowl can help you score BIG:

1. Reach people where they are - at home, in front of the TV, on their phones.

2. Make sure your message gets seen - SMS has an open rate of 98% and over 90% of text messages get opened within the first 3 minutes.

3. Send targeted and personalized offers - as opposed to a generic TV ad.

4. Give people what they truly expect - catchy and creative ads.

5. Spend pennies on the dollar - as opposed to throwing your 5-year total ad budget on a 5-second TV spot.

With SMS marketing and it’s sky-high engagement rates, your business can reach the top of the scoreboard.

Super Bowl Timeline, Strategies & SMS Templates

Now that you know why SMS can be a true game-changer for your marketing campaign around the Super Bowl, let us walk you through a sample action plan for the next 2 weeks.


Week 1: Help your customers get all prepped up

Some people prefer to plan ahead and be prepared for the big day. They would really appreciate it if their favorite brand reaches out to them to offer a great and at the same time - relevant offer. So now is the right time for you to launch your Super Bowl-themed text marketing campaign. 

Announce a new product launch

Use the Super Bowl to create excitement around your new product. Offer your customers a new TV set with a surrounding sound system to fully immerse in the action on the field, or a nice new piece of furniture - to help them get the ultimate Super Bowl experience.

Super Bowl Templates



  SMS Template 1:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, immerse yourself into the big game with a brand new 4k TV - perfect for the ultimate fan experience! {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


  SMS Template 2:

{SiteName}: On Sundays we watch football. {FirstName}, let us take care of your comfort with our newest leather sofa. You know you deserve it! {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


Offer Loyalty Perks

Use the weeks before Super Bowl to send your VIP customers exclusive offers or a sneak peek into your latest collection. This will raise your CLV, will give you an additional boost of sales and at the same time - you’ll show them some special care and want to make sure they are all set for the big game. Because we all know how important the Super Bowl is.

You can also offer customers, who have shopped from your store in the last 90 days, a small incentive to make another order - it could be free shipping for a limited time only or a small discount with their next purchase.

Super Bowl SMS Templates


  SMS Template 1:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, as our Gold member you can enjoy exclusive access to our newest sports collection - just in time for the big final! {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


  SMS Template 2:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, are you ready for the big game? We sure are! Grab some of our top-selling accessories with free shipping: this week only! {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


Tailored Experience

Use SMS to get to know your customers better - find out who they root for. Send them a conversational message flow, asking them which team they support for the finals. This will help you upsell relevant merchandise. To make your offer even more personalized, use filters based on your customers’ previous shopping behavior and other characteristics.  


Super Bowl SMS Templates


  SMS 1:

Hey {FirstName}, thank you for registering for {SiteName}. Are you ready for the Super Bowl finals? Let us know who you root for:
Reply with KANSAS for Kansas City Chiefs
Reply with TAMPA for Tampa Bay Buccaneers.


  SMS 2 (if customer replies with KANSAS):

Go Chiefs Go! Here’s your 10% discount code on all of our exclusive 2021 Super Bowl Merchandise: {DiscountCodeURL}



Week 2: Time to step up

Last few days before the big final - now is the time to bring your A-Game.


Now that you've taken care of all of your loyal customers and new subscribers, it's time to have everybody out to play. Since the Super Bowl is such a popular event, it's important to appeal to the rest of your SMS subscribers as well and maximize your sales. 

Launch a flash sale, BOGO (Buy One Get One) or a time-sensitive discount - it could be anything from a $20 gift voucher or a 30% discount with their next purchase.

Use FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). Phrases such as “limited time only”, “while quantities last”, etc. will serve as an additional nudge for your customers to hit the purchase button and will surely keep the sales rolling. 

Super Bowl SMS Templates


  SMS Template 1:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, our Super Bowl flash sale is here! Up to 70% discounts available for grabs until the end of the game on Sunday! {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


  SMS Template 2:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, the countdown is ON! Enjoy 15% OFF all sports gear this week only and get ready to root for your favorite team! {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


  SMS Template 3:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, are you ready for the big final? Use code {DiscountCode} and grab 40% OFF on all accessories - valid for a limited time only! {SiteUrl} Text STOP to opt out.


Group products in bundles

You can make a special Super Bowl bundle for the hardcore fans. Use this strategy to move some slow-selling items with one of your most purchased products. It is a great opportunity to clear the shelves in the beginning of the year and as an additional bonus -  a great way to boost the AOV of your store! We’re thinking snacks or gym equipment...

Super Bowl SMS Templates


  SMS Template 1:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, take your snack game to the next level with our gorgeous Super Bowl nibble plates. With safe & contactless delivery: {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


  SMS Template 2:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, order our home training goodie bags and save 30% by using code {DiscountCode}. Valid until the end of the week! {SiteUrl} Text STOP to opt out.


The Big Day: Last chance

Consider the day of the Super Bowl game as the Cyber Monday to your Black Friday campaign!

Time for one final push!

Send everyone a reminder of your offer - let them know that your deals expire really soon and it is their last chance to benefit from them. Make your message stand out with an appealing image or a GIF.

Super Bowl SMS Templates


  SMS Template 1:

{SiteName}: Psst, our flash sale is still active, {FirstName}! Go through our new collection and use discounts of up to 70%. Hurry, while it lasts: {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


  SMS Template 2:

{SiteName}: Hey {FirstName}, the game starts soon, the clock is ticking and our offer ends in just a few hours! Get your $15 OFF NOW. {DiscountCodeURL} Text STOP to opt out.


Bonus Tips

This Super Bowl will be like no other. Be considerate, empathetic and reassuring. Try to provide a safe shopping and delivery experience. Use words such as “contactless”, “touchless”, etc.

Мake sure you keep your customers updated about the status of their order. Let them know in advance if there is going to be a delay. If possible, offer curbside pickup service. 

Don’t avoid the elephant in the room. We can’t escape the current reality of a global pandemic, especially as the stadium will be almost empty. Some of the ads will be heartfelt, others will be funny. A significant part of them will rally for a cause or for collecting donations. Consider all these opportunities to reach out and make an impact. 

According to Forbes, brands should focus on real-time experiences during the game. You don't need to go viral on Twitter to get the attention of your audience. Use SMS to convey your message about the game. Steal the show with a catchy text everyone will see, and just at the right time!


Ready, Set, Touchdown

“Тhe real winners will be those creative brands that do low-budget, user-generated content campaigns showing real people. Customers need to feel connected to a brand now more than ever, so immersive experiences could be game changers”.

Bernard May is the CEO of National Positions, a 5-time Inc. 500 company, award-winning marketing agency and Google Premier Partner.

Implement some of our top text marketing strategies and the winner of this year's Super Bowl might be… YOU.  

Mariya is a Content Creator at SMSBump with strong passion for writing, crime novels and puzzles. Travel & Gaming enthusiast.

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