Again, this year, Super Bowl commercials are a hot topic and we hear many announcements proclaiming which ads were audience favorites. Here are four reports that rank the ads. They use very different methods – and come to different conclusions.
In next week’s NYCU, we will address a question one might consider even more important: “Are Super Bowl ads worth their price tag?”
The USA Today Ad Meter:
The newspaper writes that Super Bowl advertisers faced a unique set of challenges this year in both production and messaging. The tumultuous events of 2020 served as a complicated backdrop for brands, leaving them to wonder whether their ads would strike the right tone. The COVID-19 pandemic also created practical obstacles in terms of filming, forcing some brands to limit crew sizes or move their sets outdoors. Nearly 60% of commercials featured an appearance by at least one celebrity or prominent athlete.
This is USA Today’s Ad Meter Methodology: Ad Meter participants logged in, watched and rated this year’s Super Bowl ads starting Wednesday, Feb. 3. Ad rating ran through the big game and officially closed on Monday, Feb. 8 at 1 a.m. ET. Each participant rated every commercial that aired during the Super Bowl for their ratings to be counted.
- Rocket Mortgage’s two, 60-second Super Bowl ads placed first and second. Both spots starred comedian Tracy Morgan – who urged his 2.9 million followers on Twitter to sign up for Ad Meter and vote for the commercials.
- Amazon finished third with its ad starring Michael B. Jordan as a seductive version of Alexa, while M&M's humorous spot featuring Dan Levy was fourth; fifth was Toyota's moving ad about Paralympic swimmer Jessica Long; sixth was General Motors: “No Way Norway”; seventh was Cheetos: “It Wasn’t Me”; eighth was State Farm: “Drake from State Farm”; ninth was Doritos: “Flat Matthew”; and tenth was Bud Light Seltzer Lemonade: Last Year’s Lemons.
Source: Schad, T. (2021, February 8). Rocket Mortgage pulled off a surprising double Sunday night. USA Today
Ipsos Creative Excellence Award:
IPSOS’s new report says: Appealing though it may be to single out a ‘winner,’ more sophisticated and rigorous research shows how little sense that makes. Ipsos leveraged its depth and breadth to analyze this years’ Super Bowl ads through both traditional and cutting-edge methods – from surveys to social listening to AI. This combination of approaches provides a more robust and nuanced picture of Super Bowl success.
Here is their methodology:
Here are their findings:
Note – all the Ipsos award winners are available via the link below
Source: Howard, P. and Colligan, T. (2021, February 9). Ipsos Creative Excellence Award
The best Tweets:
Twitter released an analysis of their internal data that ranks Super Bowl ads based on tweets.
- “The MVP.” The brand that drove the largest overall conversation among Big Game advertisers was Pepsi. From giving fans a chance to win halftime prizes, to sharing exclusive content, Pepsi and The Weeknd (memes and all) stole the show to own the conversation before, during and long after the performance.
“The Retweet Rusher.” The brand with the most retweets on a single Tweet from a brand’s handle among Big Game advertisers.
“The Most Creative Play.” The brand that best used Twitter to creatively breakthrough, beyond promoted Tweets and video. The brand partnered with artists like Alicia Keys and Miley Cyrus to live-stream #BigConcertSmallBiz.
“The No-TV Touchdown.” The brand without a national TV spot drove the largest, overall conversation. Budweiser did things differently this year by stepping up its game and the nostalgia on Twitter, iconic Clydesdales and all.
- “The (Re)Play of the Game” was the brand with the most engagements on a single video Tweet from a brand’s handle. Fans couldn’t stop talking about the latest Marvel series.
“The Audible.” Indeed tackled the unemployment crisis by reacting to real-time events during the game and Tweeting job opportunities from brands that were advertising.
Source: Len, L.; Samson, EJ; Bigelow, M. (2021, February 8). Best of Tweets Brand Bowl LV
- Twitter Internal Data (Semantic Core). February 7, 2021 from 6pm EST - 11pm EST amongst Super Bowl Advertisers, US Only, Ranked by Total Tweets
- Twitter Internal Data (Semantic Core). February 7, 2021 from 6pm EST - 11pm EST amongst Twitter-Only Super Bowl Advertisers, US Only, Ranked by Ranked by Total Tweets
- Twitter Internal Data (Semantic Core). February 7, 2021 from 6pm EST - 11pm EST amongst Super Bowl Advertisers, US Only, Ranked by Total Retweets
- Twitter Internal Data (Semantic Core). February 7, 2021 from 6pm EST - 11pm EST amongst Super Bowl Advertisers, US Only, Ranked by Total Engagements (RTs, QTs, and Replies) on Video-Only Tweets
According to Google, viewership of Super Bowl ads on YouTube during the game rose over 70% on TV screens from last year. The YouTube channel for half-time show headliner The Weeknd peaked at over 1.6 million views per hour at 8 PM EST.
Here are Top 10 ads, as measured by YouTube views, by Gameday (Global) through 7pm PT / 10pm EST:
- Amazon – Alexa’s Body. The company’s Super Bowl ad asks the question, “What would be the ideal body for Alexa?” The answer is Michael B. Jordan, star of Black Panther and Creed.
- Jeep – The Middle. This two-minute spot features the usually commercial-shy Bruce Springsteen in an ode to unity, healing the divide, and common American ideals.
- Cadillac – All-Electric Cadillac LYRIQ | ScissorHandsFree pays homage to a classic Tim Burton movie in its “Edgar Scissorhands” spot, starring Timothée Chalamet as the clumsy Edgar who discovers the joy of hands-free cruise control.
- Uber Eats – Wayne’s World & Cardi B’s Shameless Manipulation | Eat Local | Uber Eats
Saturday Night Live nostalgia revisiting the basement, public-access show Wayne’s World. Rapper Cardi B pops in to spice things up.
- Paramount Plus – Paramount+ Expedition | Sweet Victory | Super Bowl LV Spot
SpongeBob, RuPaul and James Corden joined an all-star cast of heroes from Paramount’s streaming service Paramount Plus.
- Marvel Entertainment – Official Trailer | The Falcon and The Winter Soldier | Disney+
The second Disney+ series to be set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
- Amazon Prime Video – Coming 2 America Official Trailer #2 | Prime Video. Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall reunite in this highly anticipated sequel.
- Anheuser-Busch – Let’s Grab a Beer | Anheuser-Busch Super Bowl LV Commercial | :60
Anheuser-Busch’s first ever company ad which shows everyday people enjoying beers together in a poignant reminder of pre-pandemic life.
- Doritos – Doritos 3D | Flat Matthew. Matthew McConaughey appears as a flattened 2D version of himself who gets bowled over by a football and tangles with a robot vacuum.
- Chipotle – Chipotle | Can a Burrito Change the World? Chipotle seems to think so.
Source: Andreeva, N. (2021, February 7). Michael B. Jordan, Bruce Springsteen & Timothée Chalamet Super Bowl Ads Most Watched on YouTube
Google Sunday night released data about the Top 10 most viewed
on its video platform Feb. 7 through 7 PM PT.
And one final thought:
There were already a number of commercials released heading up to Super Bowl 55. Tide, GEICO and Guinness all released ads the week prior — leading to the confusion as to what, exactly is a Super Bowl ad anymore?
Source: Rivera, J. (2021, February 9). Sporting News
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