Welcome to the Ad Bowl
With the Super Bowl right around the corner, fans around the country are preparing for the big game by purchasing bulk orders of hot wings, hot dogs, beer and burgers for their tailgates and parties. But if you haven’t noticed, there are another group of fans preparing around the country in a somewhat different fashion: the marketing fans! The Super Bowl remains the largest advertising event in the world with 60% of viewers claiming to watch the big game just as much, and sometimes more, for the ads.
Every corporation who forks out 4 million dollars for a Super Bowl commercial slot is trying to achieve the same goal: entertain the audience to promote sales! Duh!! While most advertisers try to shoot for the funny bone, that bone can be hard to find. Funny ads get people talking about the brand, which is a great technique for any company trying to promote awareness. However, most brands that land a Super Bowl slot don’t need awareness.
Let’s take a good look at Doritos. Doritos chose the funny route in their 2015 Super Bowl commercial “Middle Seat” which caused a great deal of laughter at the ironic relatedness. Did the laughter lead to an increase in sales? The answer is yes! Doritos does not need awareness but their commercials won out for their authenticity, perhaps because they get their ideas from their “Crash the Super Bowl” competitions submitted by average Joes. This authenticity hits all the right spots for American consumers, creating both belly laughs and hungry stomachs! It showcases real life situations and experiences that all of us seem to relate to. Any business, whether it’s a start-up or a nationwide corporation, can learn from this authentic yet funny tactic to promote their brands!
Real Time Marketing
In our eyes, the best real-time marketing was done by Oreo at the 2013 Super Bowl when the power went out and suspended 34 minutes of the game. Oreo acted quickly on social media by tweeting “Power Out? No Problem” “You Can Still Dunk In The Dark”. The tweet had 12,000 re-tweets in one hour with massive amounts of positive reaction, some saying it was the best ad of the Super Bowl.
Later in the game, JC Penny tried to hop onto the real-time marketing train by tweeting what was read as “drunk tweets” because of the outrageous misspellings. JC Penny explained it as a “Tweeting With Mittens” campaign due to the weather. Yeah, right! The company received a ton of bad press and their real-time marketing technique proved to be ineffective. This strategy shows how important and how crucial social media can be in your marketing. Advertisers can strive with real-time marketing, as seen from Oreo, but it has to make sense and it has to be good. Real-time marketing is risky but with the right maneuvers, it can lead to tremendous positive attention.
Every Super Bowl will have at least one emotional commercial, doing it’s best to make our hearts throb. Toyota’s “My Bold Dad“commercial was one of the many to use emotional appeal to gain the hearts of the viewers. It was a simple car commercial, but they made it just personal enough to make you see yourself in the story and think about how important it is to have a safe and reliable car. This emotional appeal was successfully done regarding Toyota’s target audience and overall message.
Another company that tried to use this emotional appeal to their advantage was Budweiser. Do you remember that adorable friendship between the puppy and the horse that Budweiser has conveyed through their Super Bowl commercials the past couple of years? Budweiser’s 2015 Super Bowl Commercial “Lost Dog” was pinned at number 1 on USA Today’s Ad Meter and proved to win the hearts of many. But it turns out it was just puppy love: all of the popularity did not lead to increased sales for Budweiser. The company realized that their sales went up when the stories in their commercials were focused on the beer itself and we sadly will not see be seeing the puppy this Sunday. Where an emotional appeal can be very useful in promoting your brand, you have to remember what you are promoting and trying to sell. Your emotional appeal strategies must meet well with your target audience and brand. In this case, the beer beats out the puppy. We’ll miss that furry face, though!
So while watching the big game this coming Sunday, ask yourself which marketing strategies can work on you and then use those same strategies to promote your brands. Our beloved Broncos may not be playing this time, but we still can’t wait to watch the Super Bowl and, of course, the Ad Bowl!