The dirty truth about Super Bowl TV ads

Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share

3 February 2014

Spending money on Super TV ads is a waste of money

Any brand that buys airtime for Super Bowl TV ads has too much cash on its hands. It is a total waste of money and here is why.

Think back for a moment and try to remember any specific advertisement you saw on yesterday’s Super Bowl telecast (if you can remember any). Now ask yourself, “Did any of them change your mind about a brand or product so that you are now going out to buy it?” Thank you. You just made my point.

A Super Bowl TV ad is to advertising what the vanity press was to real publishing 20 years ago. It is a self-centered action taken by brands that want to be able to say, “We were on the Super Bowl” in that same way vanity press allowed folks to claim “I am a published author.”

“The Super Bowl is what Life magazine was a few decades ago. A watered-down, broad-based audience that contained so much advertising waste that Life could no longer support the magazine with advertisers’ dollars.”

 

super bowl TV adsBud Light and its Super Bowl TV ads

The Super Bowl TV ads by Bud Light will not sell a SINGLE bottle of beer to anyone that does not already buy it. As a matter of fact, if Bud wanted to own the free press that accompanies all this advertisement-entertainment drivel, it would have had all the free press it could ask for by deciding not to run ads.

The Super Bowl is what Life magazine was a few decades ago. A watered-down, broad-based audience that contained so much advertising waste that Life could no longer support the magazine with advertisers’ dollars. Advertisers woke up to that realization back then but are ignoring that “too broad an audience” now because of their own egos. They want to be seen as much as the stars on the Academy Awards red carpet. The topic of conversation at the red carpet interviews is more about how the stars look and what they are wearing than the actual movie they were in.

Suddenly I get it. “I have to see that new Johnny Depp movie, did you see how cool he looked?” Funny how clear things seem to us when you look at a similar venue that is outside of your own narrow world.

And this has nothing to do with the terrible and boring game that Fox ran around the commercials. The advertisements were just as much of a snoozer.

More on Super Bowl commercials, specifically GEICO, here.

1 Comment

  1. Ivonne Teoh

    Thanks Tom for highlighting this scam! Found your comment on the Worst Five Commercials of Super Bowl 2014. Read somewhere that Hyundai paid USD13.5 million for their Super Bowl ad which used a difficult name for their website. If the few people who remembered it and went to it, doubt any sales of Hyundai cars could be attributed to that SB ad. Indeed, “A fool and his money are soon parted.” seems to apply to companies who shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions, for a Super Bowl ad. If this money was used for Branding purposes, the Super Bowl is the wrong place for the few seconds/minute of exposure. Any Finance director of any merit should question the validity of that `investment’.

    Reply

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