I don’t know if there is another way to do it but running adverts on Super Bowl would work for you. According to Kantar, the media value of 2018 Super Bowl ad breaks on Fox were $419 mio to reach to around 111 mio people. This is just for airing adverts on one single TV channel for once… With a rough estimation, we can expect a similar amount paid for the creation and productions of these +50 commercials, including the salaries and fees of the people who worked for these commercials for months. And there should be some costs around other media to create buzz, PR support, some owned assets to keep the conversations alive, etc.

Is this money well spent? Not all of it I guess, but Super Bowl may be the best way to create awareness or communicate new news with efficiency. Not only you can reach more than a 100 mio audience at once with lower cost per reach figures, but you’ll be a part of an enjoyable, positive, reputable ad break in which the audience is highly, emotionally involved. So it is not that easy to fail with Super Bowl. All you need to do is creating some entertaining content. You do not need to worry about correct ad recall, being persuasive, building trust… Being there will do these for you. All you need to do is giving them something to remember: a new reason to try, an offer to buy, a motive to like/love, a surprise, a craving…

If you cannot do any of those, you’d better stay away from it because reaching to 100 millions of people with high expectations can be expensive if you’re simply irrelevant.

This year almost 60 brands communicated during LIII Super Bowl. Some of them were there to create brand awareness (eg. Bumble, TurboTax, Bubly, Expensify, Bon & Vic, ADT, Cure Auto Insurance, etc.), some of them had some news to share (eg. Budweiser, Amazon, Audi, Microsoft, Verizon, Kia, Toyota, Avengers, CBS, Amazon Prime, Toy Story 4, Handmaid’s Tale, Netflix, etc), some of them were there to change/shape your perceptions (eg. Pepsi, Hyundai, Google, Washington Post, Scientology, etc), some of them wanted you to try their products (eg. Stella Artois, Michelob, Bud Light, Doritos, Olay, Devour, Colgate, Yellow Tail, Planters, M&Ms, Pringles, Jim Beam, etc), some of them had something to sell (eg. Mercedes, Mini, Skechers, Sprint, SimpliSafe, Wix, NFL, Mint, WeatherTech, T-Mobile, Persil, Norwegian Cruise Line, Skull Shaver, etc). All these brands were very clear about what they wanted out of this opportunity, they aimed for it and they did the execution accordingly. Almost all of them were safe choices… Only Washington Post took a big risk this year and used the names of murdered journalists for a commercial reason, which may be seen controversial and even unethical for some…

Yet there were only a few which were not that easy to read: Hennessy, Burger King, Coca-Cola, Turkish Airlines, Avocados from Mexico, Pampers and Skittles. These were the brands that took a bit of risk of being irrelevant or invisible. I think they could have used those $5-6 millions a bit better:

Burger King and Coca-Cola twinning

Burger King’s “Eat Like Andy”
A Coke is a Coke

Funny fact- these two brands are rivals. The Coca-Cola Company has very good relations with McDonalds in most of the markets, Burger King partners with PepsiCo. However, Andy Warhol didn’t care. He ate Burger King in this video and he painted Coca-Cola bottles. He didn’t do it because these brands paid him some money from their Influencer budgets to put some content on his Instagram account, he did it as a way to express some criticism to modern commercial world. I cannot understand why these two brands are that proud about his critics, but if they tried to use Warhol as a celebrity who endorsed their products – I think they didn’t choose the right celebrity for their contemporary (non-artistic) football audience. And I hope Coca-Cola would not use this one from Ai Weiwei next year:

Coming soon: Skittles, Hennessy, Turkish Airlines and Avocados from Mexico

They used their content like a trailer to another content or story like Hulu, Amazon Prime or Netflix did… The thing is none of these brands are content driven. I can understand the need to ‘link’ to a cheaper media to have more time to engage with the audience but it rarely works that way. Kia and Verizon also ended their commercials with some external links for a follow up like thegreatunknowns.org or allourthanks.com. But they did it linked with their product/offering. Neither of these four brands above said or claimed any superiorities about their brand and/or product. Let’s leave Skittles aside for now because this is what Skittle does – this is their character and expected attitude but the rest?

Turkish Airlines, sold us Istanbul as a touristic destination and did the most expensive branded content directed by Ridley Scott. I think this advert was more of a political stunt than a commercial.

Hennessy… Hm, a Russian doll of stories: Major Taylor in Wild Rabbit in Neverstopnever in Hennessy… Too much and too crowded for 15 seconds.

Avocados from Mexico’s attempt fell short, I neither was tempted to go and search about what this is all about nor entertained.

And about Skittles – yes, this is on character and yes, the commercial itself was hilarious and yes, what they are doing is really interesting… But did they need to use Super Bowl for this? Was it necessary? Especially when the content is all about “advertising ruining everything”. Is it sarcasm?

Pampers changing gender norms, really?

Pampers and celebrity babies

Of course not. Again this is another attempt of chasing the wave: celebrities, music, babies, hot topics like gender equality… All of them in a meaningless way. Just another populist, opportunistic advert that will bring nothing additional that Pampers does not already have.

This is all from me for now. Here is all the adverts from this big and expensive night if you didn’t see them yet.

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