A lot of people watch the Super Bowl. Something to the tune of 400 billion in 250,000 countries or something like that. Some watch for the game (and a great game it was!), others watch for the halftime show (my wife was in that group tonight) and lots of people watch for the commercials.
In this world of DVR fast-forwarding, this is the one time of year that advertisers are pretty much guaranteed that a metric crap ton of eyeballs are going to be watching. A lot of money is spent on agencies and a lot of rich people get a lot richer (#OccupySuperBowl, anyone?).
I could care less who won the game…in fact, when Boston and New York play, I think most people root for both teams to lose, if that’s possible. I do watch the game, and this was definitely an exciting one. But as a marketer, I definitely pay very close attention to the ads.
This was my setup during the game: Twitter on the left, ad notes on the right.
After, I went back through and looked at my notes…tried to figure out which ones I liked best. Here were my favorites:
Hyundai – “All For One”
Now, I just bought a Hyundai Sonata last year. I love my car. I also loved what Hyundai did as the sponsor of the pre-game show. This nod to the Rocky theme was pretty great.
Best Buy – Phone Innovators
This ad from Best Buy was terrific. Phone-agnostic, but showing the type of amazing innovation that has come from the smartphone industry. And hats off to Instagram and Square…both amazing apps. And the Words with Friends nod was the perfect amount of funny.
Chevy – “2012”
Detroit came with a couple great ads and I thought Chevy had a great night. This one was the better of their two (the other being the extreme sports Chevy Sonic), especially the use of “Looks Like We Made It.”
Doritos – “Man’s Best Friend”
Doritos puts a lot of effort into their Super Bowl ads and they’ve really done a lot of user-generated stuff. This ad made me laugh. Plus, dogs > cats.
Chrysler – “Halftime in America”
This ad easily won the night for me. Not only do you have Clint Eastwood, one of the biggest American icons, but you have this message that could have very easily gotten super political and ended up being inspirational. Loved the timing (obviously, right at halftime but before Madonna). I didn’t think Chrysler could come up with an ad that would eclipse what they did last year with Eminem. Turns out I was wrong. Other people felt the same, including Chevy, who put out this very classy tweet:
— Chevrolet (@chevrolet) February 6, 2012
To me, that was pretty cool. The ad highlight of the night to me.
Some other thoughts
- The highly-publicized “Matthew Broderick’s Day Off” ad for Honda really missed the mark for me.
- When it came to movie trailers, The Avengers won, in my opinion.
- The Coca-Cola polar bears are over.
- I really love Betty White, but she runs the risk of overexposure, in my opinion.
- The Hulu Plus ads are terrible.
- I saw a ton of hash tags in commercials. Some good. Some bad. Very few were on screen long enough to be noticed. Keep them on the whole time. #solongvampires
- The VW ad was funny, but that Star Wars end to it was totally lame.
- At the risk of being a “defensive fan boy,” I thought the Samsung Note ad was a good ad for an absolutely terrible product. Nice to see someone trying to take on Apple. Is a mini-tablet (or is that a giant phone?) with a stylus really the best product to attack with?
- Go Daddy is the worst.
- After a bunch of terrible halftime shows (all since the infamous “wardrobe malfunction”), Madonna set the bar for the next 10 years. All halftime shows should be measured against that.
What did you think?