Friday, February 1, 2013

Super Bowl of Commercials

Talk about the tail wagging the dog - during the television coverage of last year's Super Bowl, there were 47 minutes of commercials (3 more than 2010). Now, remember the game of football is made up of four - fifteen minute periods (a mere 60 minutes) - and, much additional time monkeying around on the field trying to figure out if what the refs said happened was what really happened, men gathering in a circle (what's that all about?) and then the players trying to figure out where they are supposed to be on the field.

According to the Wall Street Journal in 2010 the average NFL game included 11 minutes of actual football play, about an hour of advertising, and the rest of the time was just whatever else they do on and off the field.

But the Super Bowl has become Madison Avenue's grand day. This year, it is so bad (or good) that TV shows have been doing teasers of the ads for weeks. So the ad companies have managed to get free air time on just the buzz of what their 30 second ad is going be. If you think about it, they are getting bang for their buck before the ad runs.

And, then Monday morning, the talk shows always rank the top ads, and play them once again. Even if your ad is seen as a loser, chances are, if there was any controversy, the ad will be played again on the talk shows, or least talked about enough that folks (who didn't see it the night before) will go find it online and stream it. 

Over the years, there have been classic ads that folks still talk about. (And, some we could do without.) Cute kids and sexy women sell. Doritos has their "Crash the Super Bowl" ad campaign where fans submit  their "home made" commercials.  The top five are awarded prizes, including tickets to the game. And, the winner's ad is run during the game. 

Some of the more memorable Super Bowl ads of all time include:

  • Farrah Fawcett and Joe Nameth (Noxzema)
  • Cindy Crawford and the little boys (Pepsi),
  • Pizza Guy Wazzzup, Frog, Lizards' ads (Budweiser), 
  • VW - The Force, 
  • Zerox - The Monks, 
  • The Budweiser Clydesdales 9/11 Tribute, 
  • Coca Cola - Mean Joe Green, 
  • Apples 1984 ad.
It has gotten so as we eat our pizza, wings, chips, and salsa we don't take any breaks to excuse ourselves or answer the phone until the game starts again. No one wants to miss the ads and come back to, "Oh, you should have seen that Budweiser ad. It was priceless. This little . . ." Remind me, what teams are playing again.

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