Breaking down Super Bowl advertising

Uploaded by UniversityofMinn on 01.02.2011

[music playing] We're such a fragmented society
in our viewing habits, in our readership habits,
all our habits, that it's rare to find any event
where people are all talking about it,
the run-up to it, and the day after.
The Super Bowl is probably the best example of it.
For the big companies, as you said, it's a no-brainer.
They spend so much money advertising,
they need mass audiences, and this is a place
to reward their people.
There's a lot of stuff rolled into it.
People like being involved in the Super Bowl as an advertiser,
it charges up the troops, you get all your dealers together,
and you have a party there.
There's a lot of collateral, if you will, involved that makes
that an interesting, exciting place
for the big advertisers to be.
You have two choices, you can play it safe and go
down to the lowest common denominator and you'll get wiped
out because nobody's going to remember anything.
When you've got a very large, diverse audience
with diverse taste, one of the ways people try
to get publicity is to stand out from the clutter by taking it
in some direction that's "extreme."
So, that happens every year and we shouldn't be surprised
because there's enormous pressure on the advertisers,
the people spending the money to get "results."
What does "results" mean?
Standing out from the clutter, and it's a bit of an arms race
because everybody's trying to do something different.
We know what makes popular ads.
It's easy to measure popularity and there's a pretty quick way
for each of us to figure that out.
When you watch an ad, just reflect on what came to mind
as you're watching the ad.
That's going to tell you whether people like the ad or not.
If you liked the ad, if you found yourself cheering
for the ad, you probably liked the ad and that's probably true
of most people who watched it.
If you find yourself counter arguing
with the ad, you didn't like it.
It doesn't matter what the actual content is,
if in the moment you find yourself counter arguing
with it, the ad doesn't work as a device.
Does it work as a sales promotional device?
Does it work in the business sense?
Those are largely detached from the social visibility
and the social popularity of ads.
It's a companion piece and the companies that know how
to use it get milage out of it.
The idea is to create conversation around your message
and the dance, if you will, is that historically we've always,
we meaning companies, have always been used
to controlling that message.
So it scares them that social media is a world
where they don't control the message,
but if you're smart enough about it,
and I would point to Frito-lay.
Look at the immense amount of free publicity they got
out of turning their ad campaign in the Super Bowl
into an ad contest, thousands of entries and the amount
of virtual ink spent talking about it was much more
than the ads themselves.
So yes, it's a companion piece,
it's a magnifier, it's a multiplier.