Sunday saw the Kansas City Chiefs top the Philadelphia Eagles in a high-scoring yet tightly-contested Super Bowl. The game drew its largest audience in six years, making the 30-60 seconds of mid-game advertising that brands spent millions to get all the more competitive. But who emerged as the winners of this ads race to match the success of the champion Chiefs on the field?
Dunkin’ and The Farmer’s Dog win approval.
Dunkin’ had one of the first ads out of the gate during the game and enlisted Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez to captivate audiences. According to the latest CivicScience data, the humorous ad was well-received by viewers, with 31% indicating that it made them the most likely to purchase from Dunkin’, compared to six other brands included in a poll (not including alcohol brands/ads).
Another brand that made a positive impression was The Farmer’s Dog, a newcomer to the Super Bowl advertising scene, which left 22% of respondents feeling inspired to potentially purchase from the dog food brand. Notably, The Farmer’s Dog bucked the trend of relying on celebrities, instead opting for an emotionally appealing ad with a dog.
Other notable mentions include PopCorners and T-Mobile ads, each appealing the most to 14%-15% of viewers (n=2,449).
Netflix’s and GM’s ad promoting electric vehicles and featuring Will Ferrell wasn’t a big hit among respondents. Potentially important to consider, CivicScience polling from January showed the support is falling for brands taking a stand on issues and causes.
And despite receiving positive feedback from experts, website builder Squarespace’s ad with actor Adam Driver came in last – only 2% of viewers indicated that the ad made them want to sign up for Squarespace services.
Which beer brand won the Super Bowl?
This year’s Super Bowl advertising saw a dramatic shift away from crypto in favor of a greater emphasis on beer and alcohol brands. Anheuser-Busch ending its exclusive NFL partnership paved the way for competitors like Molson-Coors, who made its comeback to the big game after a 30 year hiatus.
In a surprising turn, Blue Moon emerged as the standout, with an ad that playfully pitched it against its fellow Molson-Coors beers, Miller Lite and Coors Lite. More than one-third (34%) of 21+-year-old ad viewers said the Blue Moon ad was the best among beer brands. The ad did not have a celebrity but did partner with DraftKings to allow fans to bet on the contents of the ad for a share of $500K.
Even with star power such as Serena Williams, Kevin Bacon, and Miles Teller, Anheuser-Busch’s Michelob Ultra, Bud Light, and Budweiser were each unable to surpass Blue Moon’s ad in popularity.
Heineken promoted its 0.0 non-alcoholic beer during the game. Its ad featuring Paul Rudd as Ant-Man did not, however, lead to as much excitement for viewers compared to the other beers.
What effect did the ads have on brand perception?
This year’s crop of Super Bowl advertising led to similar percentages among people who said the ads generally affected their perception of a brand positively and negatively. A slightly higher percentage of ad viewers said many of the ads had a negative effect over a positive effect (9% to 7%). The ads also had more of an impact this year as more people responded both positively and negatively overall from last year’s ads.
Tubi’s channel change produces mixed results.
Free streaming service Tubi, owned by Super Bowl broadcaster Fox, caused quite a stir with its late-game ad. Amid an increasingly crowded and competitive streaming market, Tubi ran an ad that appeared to change the channel away from the game via its platform. Social media was abuzz, with many viewers thinking they accidentally changed the channel. While 30% of those who saw Tubi’s ad said they’re at least somewhat likely to try the streaming service, more than half (51%) were turned off by the ad and are not at all likely to try Tubi.
Celebrity appearance was a common formula in Super Bowl advertising this year but some top performers relied on other tactics to win hearts and minds. An ever-shifting landscape of advertising is sure to keep brands on their toes to constantly look for creative ways to get ahead.
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