The past two Super Bowls, advertisers released teasers and sometimes whole commercials before the game hoping to maximize exposure. Now, they're not so sure that was a good idea. Some viewers complained they got burned out on the commercials before they even aired.
Upon further review, the logic tree now goes something like this:
Some agencies and companies are releasing early, some are holding back and some are doing a combination of the two.
OK, so marketing isn't a complex science.
But wanting to maximize exposure on a Super Bowl ad makes sound fiscal sense. The cost of a 30-second spot has jumped 7 percent over last year to $3.8 million, while $7.5 million will get you a minute of exposure before an audience of about 100 million. For that kind of money, modern-day madmen want as much marketing punch as possible.
But what's really better? Giving out a free taste or saving the big reveal for game day?
Budweiser is trying both ways, according to the vice president of U.S. marketing for Anheuser Busch, which has used the Super Bowl platform to release such masterpieces as the Bud-wie-ser frogs (directed by Gore Verblinski, who gave us the horror classic The Ring and Pirates of the Carribbean) and the "Whassup" guys.
"This year there are some ads that we are going to hold back and some that we are releasing early," Paul Chibe told the Los Angeles Times.
A-B is the biggest advertiser again this year, with a four-and-a-half minute air buy, according to Advertising Age. Be sure to watch for the two 30-second spots hawking new, high-alcohol brews. Two one-minute spots will feature Bud Light and another one minute spot will focus on the Clydesdale horses.
Deutsch Advertising is on the aggressive end of the spectrum. It released a Taco Bell commercial on YouTube a full two weeks before kickoff that had more than 200,000 clicks within four days, which CNN and other cable news outlets dutifully reported.
Taco Bell – Grandpa goes wild
Mercedes Benz has managed to stir up controversy with a pre-game teaser featuring Sports Illustrated swimsuit model Kate Upton being gorgeous in a pair of Daisy Dukes and a skimpy, black tank top.
The company also released a series of teasers showing tight shots of a new car while Mick Jagger and the Stones belt out Sympathy for the Devil.
Mercedes bought a fourth-quarter commercial and will get a boost from the game's venue: The Mercedes Benz Superdome in New Orleans.
Deutsch also produced Go Daddy's 30-second spot, which will air after the two-minute warning in the second half. It's a lighthearted attempt to get people to get off the couch and get their big ideas online.
PSY, whose viral dance video became the first in history to top billion hits, will appear on behalf of Wonderful Pistachios in a commercial entitled Get Crackin - Gangnam Style.
The run-up includes a chance for a lucky fan to win a 12-month lease of a new Mercedes Benz SLK 250, the kind the "yellow suit guy" drives in the viral video. The ad won't air until Feb. 3, but here's the buzz-building Facebook page.
Frito-Lay is continuing its 7-year-old Crash the Super Bowl contest by allowing fans to vote on their favorite short spot produced by regular people with low budgets. Each ad features a video about coming up with and producing the ads, which are enlightening and entertaining.
You can watch the five finalists on the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl Facebook page.
PepsiCo is buying two ads, one of which will introduce the halftime show, featuring Beyonce, who also works for Pepsi. The teasers are not subtle:
Volkswagen has released a hilarious teaser that features people from memorable viral videos in which they had tantrums or cried dancing and rejoicing while reggae singer Jimmy Cliff sings Come on Get Happy.
Chrysler had the most widely acclaimed and discussed ad last year, It's Halftime in America, featuring Clint Eastwood reciting copy written by a Portland, OR, poet, Michael Dickman and directed by Pineapple Express director David Gordon Green.
That ad lasted two minutes and cost $14 million to air. Chrysler has been super secretive about this year's commercial.
That masterpiece was produced by Wieden+Kennedy, a Portland, OR, based company known for moving, artistic advertisements. Wieden+Kennedy is producing one of Coca-Cola's ambitious ads this year, an innovative attempt to let fans vote and to involve social media in the process before the game.
Calling the multi-platform approach an effort to "Gamify the game," the company last week released a teaser featuring three teams (showgirls in a bus, cowboys on horses and bikers on motorcycles) who are trying to get to a giant bottle of Coke. People will be able to go online to help their favorite team by sabotaging competitors.
It's easier to show you than to explain:
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