AdBowl 2015: Super Bowl Week Is Holiday Season for Digital Advertisers

Adam Deardurff, Senior Director, Strategy

There's not another event where all of the nation is a captive audience not for what to buy, but who they connect with the most. For a measly $4.5 million, your brand could have 30-seconds of mass exposure — and scrutiny. Even brand loyalists are quick to throw their favorites under the bus for a commercial that misses the mark.

This year sees a mix of returning and new brands participating in the Ad-Bowl. For the TV details, see Adage's Super Bowl Big Game Commercials Report.

As we all know, Super Bowl advertising stretches far beyond that 30 second on Television. Commercial submission contests like Dorito's Crash the Super Bowl start the previous year. Voting or sweepstakes microsites like Mercedes-Benz Big Race or Carnival Cruise's Marketing Challenge start bubbling up in January to gain participation. And even Newcastle's ambush marketing isn't waiting for game day.

At this point very few make a point to launch the concept, much less the actual commercial, live on TV and for good reason. Just take a peek at my 2015 Super Bowl Commercials pin board to get a sneak peak at what's live.

To take advantage of the pricey placement, brands know they must get as much out of the creative as possible, many generating momentum as early as possible on YouTube and Social media. Even newcomer Skittles know the drill, releasing a video starting a tailgate four weeks early with Kurt Warner.

This year we're doubling-down on one trend guaranteed to continue and identify an early front-runner for Best in Show.


In the past two years, Facebook has taken a huge backseat to Twitter as many commercials and media direct users to a campaign Hashtag. Though it's popular to use them, brands that don't have content ready to support these might fall into social silence.

Don't believe the trend? Here are 13 Super Bowl campaign hashtags that have already surfaced:

  • Skittles - #settleit
  • Loctite - #winatglue
  • Mophie - #staypowerful
  • - #itsthateasy
  • Pepsi's Halftime Show - #halftime
  • Doritos - #crashthesuperbowl
  • Budlight - #upforwhatever
  • Toyota - #oneboldchoice
  • Lexus - #lexusnx
  • Nationwide - #invisiblemindy
  • Mercedes-Benz - #teamtortoise or #teamhare
  • Snickers - #eatasnickers
  • Dove - #realstrength

Watch for a rundown of some of our favorite online campaigns after the game as Mindstream stays #tappedin.

Up next, Newcastle seems like it's got an early winner on its hands...




Adam Deardurff

Adam Deardurff Senior Director, Strategy