Is an Ad at the Superbowl Still the Dream of Today’s Marketers?

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We are in 2009 and the NFL Superbowl still  remains THE North American marketers annual rendez-vous. We wait 12 long months to enjoy what the Big Advertisers have prepared to get out attention, make us laugh and by any chance, get their brand remembered for a few days.

You haven’t seen this ad last Sunday. The official PETA ad has been banned for Superbowl braodcasting, it seems it attract lots of traffic online. (Note: This is R-Rated Stuff)

God, as a meat lover, I think I will turn veggie today! 😉

You can watch all the TV spots on the  Advertising Age Web site or on www.youtube.com. I do not want to debate on the creative aspects or the « remarkability factor » of these ads. Many other advertising experts already did it .

Although I gotta admit that my preferred ones are Monster.com with the Moose and Doritos’ Power of the crunch 😉 .  Funny ads seem to catch more attention in such circumstances. See them below.

Simple but dawn effective!

Frito Lay didn’t reinvented the wheel here but it made me laugh and fits perfectly with Doritos brand positioning.

For those interested, Bob Garfield of Advertising Age shares his views on the Best and Worst commercials of this year’ Superbowl.

NOW, THE DEBATE.

As a marketer, I am questioning what are the reasons that push national advertisers continue to spend $2.6 million advertising dollars for each 30 seconds when there are plenty of other effective and measurable ways to spend their money. Yes I know, according to Nielsen Media Research, the broadcast of the game typically drawns between 87 million and 93 million people. That is a lot. And we do not even count the single views on www.youtube.com and other web channels after the game.  But still, the ROI of one , two or 5 spots is very difficult to measure. That sum could buy several different product placements on TV shows, movies, songs and video games. Moreover, it could implement tons of web 2.0 initiatives, email campaigns, viral initiatives, etc. It could also buy two massive billboards in the middle of New York City’s Times Square, where a million people would see the ads each day for a full year, according to media services firm Zenith Media.

Did you know that these national advertisers  pay up to 85% more to reach the same number of people they would reach during prime-time network programming?

To me, Superbowl ads are just noise and waste of money fro the advertisers.  They do not help to build stronger brands; most advertised brands are already well recognized mass consumer brands (Coke, Bud, Doritos, etc) so what is the point to pay  these huge amounts of money to continue to reinforce their brands while they could reinforce them with much cheaper methods? (Only exception might be godaddy.com but still, it became an household name over the past few years).

We often hear that if they do it, it is because they get a payback on their marketing investment. I doubt.

I believe that new marketing methods will make obsolete the iconic 30 seconds Superbowl spot.  These new methods help the advertiser to surgically target their customers and also let them measure the impact of their investments. It is hard to compete with that.

Agree? Disagree? Express yourself by hitting the Comment link below.

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