The Super Bowl 2014 Spectacle

The Super Bowl is BIG. On so many levels it is American culture on steroids. Over 111 million TV viewers. Over 500,000 viewing online. According to Twitter there were 24.9 million tweets (over 500,000 which related to the ads) & 185 million game related interactions on Facebook (over 600,000 related to the ads). Advertisers spending over US$4M per 30 seconds. The parties. The sponsorships. The consumerism. And the food! – 4000 tonnes of guacamole, 14,500 tonnes of chips, 4000 tonnes of popcorn, 1.23 billion chicken wings and 325 gallons of beer. Apparently over 4 million people were going to purchase a new TV just for the big game, and even if your team isn’t playing, everyone gets together to celebrate.

But what we’re really interested in is the advertising. It is undoubtedly the biggest world stage for advertisers each year. For one night of the year everyone’s paying attention, and advertisers get to party! The ads that air during the Super Bowl are considered less of a ‘commercial break’ and more like an all guns blazing popularity contest. Apparently over 40% of people watch the game just to watch the ads! Seriously, what do you remember from the 2007 Super Bowl, the final score or the eTrade baby?

For us here at Luma, the big game was projected on our wall, and although we glanced at the game occasionally (to witness the crushing beating), as soon as the ads came on we got a little excited! From a quick poll around the office, some of the stand outs for us were: Budweiser ‘Puppy’, Doritos ‘Time Machine’, Coke ‘America the beautiful’ and the Axe ‘Make love not war’ ads.

Overall, however, there was a sense of being a little underwhelmed by the creative on display. There was a feeling that the advertisers played it a bit safe. As always, there was a scattering of cute children, adorable animals, cool soundtracks and top rating celebrity packed into the ads. But we want to know whether that is enough for these ads to get noticed and impact on brand feelings, or do advertisers still need to focus on a brand or product message?

To find out more we are digging a little deeper, and carrying out research of our own to better understand more about the ads. Early indications from the first stage of our research - which was carried out via mobile phone immediately after the game on Sunday night - suggest that the Budweiser ads were most memorable. We can also see that 7 of the top 20 ads were car ads, and 9 of the top 20 featured celebrities. With the second stage of Luma’s research now well underway, we are all eager to see what insights we uncover! Stay tuned… Author: Zoe Manderson

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