Top 5 Superbowl ads and the one I could’ve really gone without

So as anyone in the industry (particularly our US colleagues) will know that Sunday heralded in the 49th Superbowl game between the New England Patriots (the recent focus of ‘Deflategate’) and the Seattle Seahawks. Although many viewers will have tuned in their televisions for the game – American football after all has an estimated 400 million fans worldwide, the game also drew a significant focus from the advertising industry, with more than 70 advertisers paying a reported US$4.5 million (approx £2.9 million) for 30 seconds of air time that is expected to hit the eyeballs of 115 million viewers.

You can find a complete anthology of the ads televised between kick-off and the final touchdown, however I thought I’d list my top five favourites from the night. So, in no particular order of awesomeness, these are:

#1) Kia Sorento (starring Pierce Brosnan)

As a non-driver, car ads usually fall a little flat for me, but this ad starring one of Hollywood’s A-listers digs at the action lifestyle of James Bond films in a way that is both hilarious as it is mildly self-deprecating.

#2) Mophie “All Powerless”

Making jokes at Hollywood’s expense seems to be a recurring theme this year as phone brand ‘Mophie’ plays on the ridiculousness of disaster movies to advertise the power and length of its battery life.

#3) Budweiser #BestBuds “Lost Dog”

Released online before the game, this adorable ad clocked up millions of views, and let’s be honest, it’s hard not to see why. I was sucker for Homeward Bound growing up and this tugs all the same heartstrings.

#4) Mercedes Benz AMG GT “Fable”

Creating a modern twist on the ‘Tortoise and the Hare’ fable, this ad plays on the story of the overly confident hare speeding off into the distance before being outsmarted by the methodological and wise tortoise who, in this case, buys himself a luxurious 2016 Mercedes AMG GT S in which to quite literally fly across the finish line.

#5) Always #LikeAGirl

Always is known for its focus on globally empowering girls, bringing education on puberty to millions of adolescents around the world. This ad is the latest expression of this theme in raising the impact of the insult #LikeAGirl has on a girls confidence and kicking off an epic battle to show girls that “doing it #LikeAGirl” is an awesome thing throughout puberty and beyond.

And finally, the one I could’ve gone without…

McDonalds’ Pay with Lovin’

Now my “Everyone communicates” article on the growing role of corporate communications and stakeholder relations may have made my personal feelings about McDonalds pretty clear. I’m not one for junk food at the best of times, and McDonalds (to me at least) is the epitome of why that is. The pay with lovin’ campaign in which surrounding February 14th (also known as Valentine’s Day), McDonald’s will randomly select customers to “Pay With Lovin’”. As shown, this can be done by calling a family member, doing a dance, high fives, and otherwise being sickly sweet.

Personally given the issues the brand is facing with regards to its ingrediants, the treatment of animals and the subsequent quality of its food, not to mention its unfair working practices that have been given extensive media coverage, the campaign (and this ad in particular) just come across as fake and contrived beyond belief. Not a fan.

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