Arts & Entertainment

Super Bowl Advertising Preview - What's the Big Deal?


CRANFORD, NJ - Every year many sports fans prepare to watch the big game, but just as many people, if not more, watch the Super Bowl for the television advertising.

Those brands expected to have ads running again this year include Acura, Bud Light, Buick, Coca-Cola, Honda, Hyundai, MINI USA and Kia, just to name a few.

Avocados from Mexico is a newer Super Bowl advertiser, just in their second year. Their ad will include a storyline about sending avocados to space with actor Scott Baio.

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According to broadcast network NBC, one ad is estimated at a price tag of over $5 million; that's a lot of cash for a few seconds of time. Then again, 114 million viewers watched last year's game according to NBC and it rendered a 47.5 share, the highest viewership percentage for a Super Bowl since the Bears-Patriots matchup in 1986. Although it is unknown how this Sunday's game will matchup to year's past, millions of eyeballs will be focused on the ads no matter which team wins.

Every year brands with high profile names and deep awareness continue to advertise on this big stage. TAP into Cranford owner and 20-year marketing veteran, Jennifer LoBianco, explains, "It's about being in the spotlight and aligned with the NFL property, other brands, the NBC network, no other event is like it in terms of viewership. So even if you are a big brand with a solid name already, it's a given part of your marketing budget each year. And with that, brands over time have figured out ways to create engagement with their viewers, so they may have part of an ad that continues online, or a special offer for viewers; they aren't paying these exorbitant ad prices without getting a big bump in web traffic, social media engagement and sales of some sort."

As for smaller brands, even some of them have spent top dollar too. LoBianco explains, "While some brands decide to spread out their annual ad spend, others decide to be 'all in' for just one event, even just one ad placement, because the reach and engagement is tremendous for the Super Bowl and brands know that viewers are tuning into the ads, not tuning out."

One of the most famous brands early on that spent all of their annual budget just during the Super Bowl each year was Master Lock, who was not as much interested in getting consumers engaged, but hardware-store owners at the time. It has been reported by the brand that from 1973 to 1994 while they ran Super Bowl ads, including the famous attempt to break the lock with a single gunshot, their annual sales jumped from $35 million to $200 million.

A more recent brand that became noteworthy during their infancy was GoDaddy, who also spent a lot early on before they were today's power player in the web hosting arena.

Ironically this is the first year of last twelve that GoDaddy is skipping the Super Bowl.

LoBianco adds, "Both Master Lock and GoDaddy spent most of their money at the time for one ad and that's it, they realized that they could garner enough awareness, phone calls (before the internet), distribution, sales and engagement from one ad then they could all year."

While some of these ads in full format are already floating around the Internet, for others, just teasers have been released.

Snickers is using celebrity talent to promote their candy bar, including Willem Dafoe doing his best Marilyn Monroe impersonation, white dress and all. 

Those brands appearing for the first time include: Bai (a low calorie beverage brand), ShockTop (beer beverage company), SoFi (a financial services company) and SunTrust Banks.

In addition, Alec Baldwin and Dan Marino will star in Amazon's first ever Super Bowl ad, while Marmot outdoor apparel and PayPal will also make their big game debut. 

According to media buzz there are many very creative new ads ready to roll on Sun. Feb 7, when the game starts at 6:25 p.m. with halftime show at 8:15 p.m. Enjoy the ads, and the game too.

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