APM Research Lab finds 37 percent of Americans “more likely” to view Minneapolis as a desirable destination following Super Bowl LII coverage

Media contact: Angie Andresen, 651-290-1373

ST. PAUL, Minn., February 19, 2018 —The APM Research Lab released the results of its 2018 National Super Bowl Survey of nearly 1,000 American adults, living in all states except the Super Bowl host state, Minnesota. The nationally representative survey was conducted during the week following Super Bowl LII, which was played on Feb. 4, 2018, in Minneapolis.

The survey found that 54 percent of Americans could name the Super Bowl location (either city or state), and that more Americans had positive impressions (37%) than had negative impressions (29%) of Minneapolis as a result of Super Bowl media coverage.

“Our basic question was ‘Did Minneapolis win the Super Bowl?’ and these results do suggest a victory, at least in terms of how the rest of the country views Minneapolis in the game’s immediate aftermath,” said Craig Helmstetter, APM Research Lab’s managing partner.

Helmstetter added that this survey should not be confused with a comprehensive cost-benefit study of host city efforts. He also noted that the survey was internally funded, not commissioned by interests favoring or opposing the NFL or local host city efforts.

Notable findings concerning awareness of where the Super Bowl was held include:

  • Lower levels of awareness of where Super Bowl LII was hosted among younger adults (only 37% among those age 18-34), as well as Hispanics (32%), those with a high School diploma or less (38%), and those reporting annual household incomes under $25,000.
  • Higher levels of awareness among those with a bachelor’s degree or more education (69%) and those reporting annual household incomes of $75,000 or more (73% of whom could name the host location).
  • Those living in North East states, home to Super Bowl contenders Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots, were more likely to be aware of the game’s host location (60% correctly identifying the city or state), as were those living in the North Central states near Minnesota (70%). Less than half of those living in the South and West could name the location of Super Bowl LII.

In response to a question asking, “As a result of media coverage of the Super Bowl, are you more or less likely to think of Minneapolis as a good place to visit?” 37 percent said “more likely,” while 29 percent said “less likely.” Nearly a quarter said that Super Bowl coverage does not matter to them.

Notable differences among sub-groups include:

  • Over half of African Americans said that Super Bowl coverage made them more likely to think of Minneapolis as a good place to visit, compared to less than 40 percent of Whites and Latinos.
  • Those with more education and higher incomes were more likely to report that media coverage did not sway their opinions of Minneapolis.
  • By region, the highest proportion indicating positive impressions were from North Central states (near Minnesota), while the lowest proportion came from Southern states (44% and 32% respectively reporting “more likely” to think of Minneapolis as a good place to visit.)

“These mixed reactions show that hosting the Super Bowl carries potential risk as well as potential benefit for a city—especially when the day of the event turns out to be the coldest Super Bowl ever” noted Kassira Absar, an associate with the APM Research Lab.

In a follow-up question about why people had altered impressions of Minneapolis as a result of Super Bowl coverage, most of the positive responses mentioned the Super Bowl and related media coverage (20%), personal connections with the area (19%), or other favorable attributes of Minneapolis, including the scenery and friendly people (16%).

Those who were “less likely” to think of Minneapolis as a good place to visit as a result of Super Bowl Coverage tended to mention either personal reasons (for example: “I don’t travel that much,” or “It’s because of my age”) or the weather. One respondent said, “Minneapolis is cold. The Super Bowl isn’t going to change that.”


The National Survey of Super Bowl Impressions included interviews with 977 adults, representing every state except the 2018 Super Bowl host state, Minnesota. Interviews were conducted by SSRS of Glen Mills, PA, by telephone, both landline (40%) and cell phone (60%), and in both English and Spanish. The margin of error associated with this survey is +/-3.1 percentage points. Complete results and methods are available online at bitly.com/SuperBowlSurvey2018




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About the APM Research Lab the APM Research Lab is a division of American Public Media aimed at informing the public by producing credible research- and analysis- based content. The Research Lab conducts research projects of all types — surveys, demographic analyses, literature reviews, and more — and informs the work of partner organizations and the broader public through traditional reports, as well as infographics, blog posts, interactives, presentations, and other platforms. For more information, visit apmresearchlab.org.