On February 2 millions of people will tune into the football’s biggest night. But many of them will be just as interested in the event’s commercials, which cost about $4 million for a 30-second spot, not including production costs.
This year, advertisers are banking on the element of surprise, especially compared with two years ago, when almost every ad was pre-released to the public before the game, said Villanova School of Business Marketing Professor Charles R. Taylor, an expert on major event advertising.
The pre-release trend allowed commercials to pick up several million hits on social media before it even hit the television. But it’s not being given away this year. (You can find some of the teasers above.)
Taylor told Patch that he is looking most forward to the ads that have been kept a secret and those by first-time Super Bowl advertisers like Cheerios and Heinz.
Also, Coca Cola is saying it will appeal to nostalgia and part of American life, he said. “It has the potential for really great ad.”
Last year, Taylor said Coke really hyped up a voting on social media that awarded voters a coupon. He said it was not very effective for Coke. In fact, big advertisers are realizing the objective with these ads is to build the brand rather than maximize social media hits.
Advertisers are also using celebrity spokespeople more than ever.Budweiser will use Arnold Schwarzenegger and Don Cheadle. Laurence Fishburne will represent Kia Motors. Sarah McLachlan will advertise for Audi in a riff on her SPCA ads.
Scarlett Johansson is making her own soda with Soda Stream. They must be going for some glamour, Taylor said. But that could be a potential problem, he said, because “most of us could picture her drinking expensive wine or champagne, but it’s harder to picture her making her own soda.”
In some cases, no-longer-A-listers are being used to play on the power of memories. Yogurt manufacturer Oikos is featuring John Stamos and his other male stars from the show Full House. “Bob Saget and Dave Coulier may not be A-listers right now, but a lot of people have fond memories from that show,” Taylor said.