Are you ready for some advertising mayhem?! You better be, because, even though the Super Bowl is still two days away, loads of ads for the big game are already here.
If you’re American, alive, and breathing then it’s no secret that, these days, companies are releasing their Super Bowl ads days, even weeks, in advance of the big game. As this Tech Crunch piece from last year’s pre-Bowl ad blitz notes, brands are looking to better capitalize on the huge investments they make in advertising for the Super Bowl. And with 30 second spots selling for $4.5 million a piece during the big game this year, it only makes sense that brands would want to expand the lifespan of their campaigns beyond the Super Bowl as much as possible.
While some may miss the excitement and surprise that came from seeing an ad for the first time back in the Super Bowl days of yore, the early release strategy is paying off for many brands in significantly improving an ad’s overall reach. Last year’s popular “Puppy Love” spot from Budweiser, for example, scored over 40 million views across all online channels by the day after the game, and that’s in addition to any views it got out of the 111 million strong audience who also saw it during the Super Bowl.
Whether the lengthy Super Bowl marketing blitz makes you feel excited or assaulted, it’s clear that, much like the big game itself, Super Bowl ads are no longer just an event – they’re a veritable season of the American public consciousness. So, with that in mind, let’s get into the spirit of the season with a look at some of the best and worst Super Bowl ads released so far.
BMW’s “Newfangled Idea” spot, promoting their new i3 electric car, will be instantly relatable for folks who remember the advent of the internet, and instantly hilarious for viewers young enough to have never lived without it.
In what must surely be the best use of archival Today show footage ever, Katie Couric and Bryant Gumbel circa 1994 quibble cluelessly about how to refer to the “@” symbol, before Couric gives up and asks someone off camera to explain “what internet is.” There’s also a cool looking BMW in there, and Gumbel asks Katie Couric if she twerks at the end. Well, at least the first 50 seconds were solid.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1jwWwJ-Mxc
No More, a domestic violence prevention organization, released their ad early, and it’s already making waves as the first advertisement to address domestic violence ever set to air during the Super Bowl. The big game version will be 30 seconds, but the 60 second version has already racked up over 1.7 million views on YouTube. The piece offers a simple, chilling visual of a house in disarray set to a voice-over recording of a woman in a dangerous situation calling 911 for help, and disguising her call as simple order for pizza.
GoDaddy is no stranger to controversial Super Bowl ads, and the debate is on as to whether they’re riding the controversy all the way to the bank, or not. This year, though, they didn’t even get off the ground with their ad, “Journey Home,” which chronicles the adventures of a young puppy beating incredible odds to find its way home from the wild, only to be promptly shipped out to a new owner after being sold on a GoDaddy website.
While intended as a spoof of Budweiser’s “Puppy Love,” out of context, the ad could be seen as endorsing puppy mills, or, at worst, as laughing at animal cruelty. The outcry from animal rights activists was prompt and stern, and GoDaddy announced that it would pull the ad from the Super Bowl broadcast. It’s not yet clear what they’ll air instead, but, in the meantime, you can still catch this mighty misfire online.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qI9wq2ZDoKM
Don’t forget to check back here after the big game for Flip’s annual wrap up of the best examples of storytelling in Super Bowl ads. Oh, and Go Hawks!