Super Bowl Ad Expert: Don't Look for Super Commercials This Year, but There Will Be Highlights


Newswise — The Super Bowl is the most watched sporting event of the year, but, as we know, many of those viewers will be watching to see the commercials and could care less about the actual game.

John Antil, Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Delaware, says these folks might end up feeling disappointed on Sunday. Some of ads we normally count on to be hits are gone, he says, while others have adopted what appear to be rather strange strategies.

This year, AdAge has thus far published only 25 companies who plan to be in the game, though in the past that number seems to have been much higher with just over a week left before the big game (the final tally is normally about 50 companies/brands), Antil says.

Another indicator that things may have changed comes from iSpotTV who collects massive amounts of data on most every TV ad. For 2016 they reported Super Bowl ads received just over 297 million earned views while for 2015 the number was nearly 382 million (a 22% decline).

The commercial offerings during Super Bowl LI won't be a complete goose egg, Antil says.

- 84 Lumber - The building material and supply company is looking to break new ground. As a B2B, it would typically skip the Super Bowl and other big ad slots since its target audience is small relative to the audience it would reach. But this year its taking a new tack, airing an ad to help recruit 400 new employees with the primary message related to 84 Lumber being a great place to work.

- Snickers - Mars is planning what it’s calling the “first live Super Bowl ad.”

- End-around ads - Yellow Tail wine will get around an exclusive rights agreement with Anheuser Bush by running regional ads that appear to be national.

These are just a few of the many observations Antil has regarding the commercials planned for this year's game.


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