My take on the Super Bowl

What I like the most about the Super Bowl is the surprise of watching the spots for the first time. This year the surprise was gone. Many of the spots featured during the game were released earlier through YouTube and spread rapidly – some more than others. That was already a bad sign of what was coming on Sunday. Two-minute spots in their sneak peak 30-second versions and of course: more Go Daddy, more babies, more cars, and even chimpanzees.

It was my first Super Bowl after reading Steve Job’s autobiography. Expectations and curiosity based on Apple’s, “1984” spot were obvious. However, there was nothing like it. Not sure if there will ever be again. A launch that big, a brand not trying to sell, or just pure entertainment. Now a spot is not enough entertainment. There has to be a social element, because social is shifting the course of communications and advertising. A couple of brands tried it.

Coke had the greater initiative with the real time Polar Bears. AdAge reported over a million people followed the bears online watching their reactions to the game. They even fell asleep during the Pepsi commercials. That’s fun! But this only works for people who don’t care about the game. I believe Coke missed an opportunity to connect with consumers directly interacting with the online transmission, not a separate site.

The spots Media companies purchased only worked for cable subscribers, so those of us who watched the game online had the surprise of not having the spots aired during the commercial breaks. Instead, every time there was a commercial break a movie trailer which name I don’t remember aired again and again… If not the unknown movie trailer then a series of spots with Dwight from The Office. They created around three so they were very repetitive. It was the online component of the Chevy campaign; ironically my favorite from all the Super Bowl actions.

The spot they aired is a 30 second Stunt Anthem that shows the different actions they’ve done with the Chevy Sonic:

Instead of investing money showing Dwight, which I love don’t get me wrong, I would have show the Sonic stunts. Watching a car bungee jumping is something I can watch more than once and still be engaged. Watching Dwight in every break, not so much. I liked the spot, loved the song and now I’m waiting anxiously for the launch of the album from the band, Fun

Another missed opportunity for them. It’s obvious that people Shazamed the song and wanted to download the album. I did at least. But the album is not out yet. Will be later this month, I just hope I haven’t heard so much of the song that I never want to listen to it again. Missed opportunity for the band Fun, but not for OK/GO.

This band was the other artist involved in the campaign. Famous for the treadmill choreography they did for their song, “Here It Goes Again.” They had a bigger role. They partnered with Chevrolet to create the first Chevy “Sonic” music video. Very well thought partnership. From all the bands out there, they fit perfectly with Sonic’s personality:


This song has been around a long time and makes part of the album Of The Blue Colour Of The Sky. Their move was smart. They launched the video the next day after the Super Bowl. Those whose attention was stuck on Chevy’s campaign for sure wanted to see the complete music video. And there it was waiting for them. So as a campaign, as a platform, as an idea, Chevy’s “Sonic” is my number one pick and my congratulations go to the guys at Goodby, Silverstein and Partners.

Now, if I had to choose just my favorite spot, it will obviously have to be…

Kidding. That’s probably the worse spot I’ve ever seen in my entire career. Not sure, what results will they get, but one thing I’m sure is I’m not doing my taxes with them. Only disgusting people who pee in pools will.

I don’t have an overall favorite, but here are the ones I liked:

Bridgestone Performance’s “Football” is a smart way to show the product as they keep relevance with the event. Unfortunately, the basketball execution was not nearly as good.

M&M’s made me laugh. The spot was smart, had the most popular hit as a soundtrack and a clear idea that worked.

In the car category, I liked the “Reinvented” Toyota Camry spot. The concept is strong; has good humor and who doesn’t want the reinvented coach?

Chrysler did a great job again this year. The copy of the spot was very well written. It’s sort of the same structure as the Ronald Reagan “Its morning again in America” campaign. However it works and people liked it.

 Kia and Acura also did a good job. However, both spots work much better in their longer online versions.

After going through all the online polls I realized that my mind as someone who works in advertising is very different to the common public who don’t. The USA today Super Bowl Ad Meter was clear proof of that. The Doritos “Sling” baby spot was America’s favorite. That spot would never be in my top ten list. It makes you smile, but that’s it. Bud Light’s “Weego” was second but not in my top either. We agreed at least with Kia and Chrysler. Now, I’ll just wait and see the results of the YouTube Ad Blitz to compare.

One thing is clear after this year’s Super Bowl: Advertisers no longer care about the 30-second spot they are paying millions to air. They need their money to be reflected online somehow. And the numbers in this Super Bowl proved that.

I wish it wasn’t like that. It will be nice for once if all the focus was centered in one place. Impossible too. The multi-tasking era is more multi-tasking than ever. People tweeted about the game, shared their pics and moments on Facebook, interacted online like never before. Meanwhile, in the offline world, was there any interaction? We’ll see where this social craziness leads us to. I just wish we could unplug a little but I guess it’s already too late.

Enjoy the half-show.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s