Reflecting on the Super Bowl Ads

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After enjoying one of the most expensive advertising days of the year, as data analysts, we can’t help but judge what we see based on the measurability of that investment.  This year, on the day of the Super Bowl, advertisements generated $500 million in ad revenue for Fox, 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch said Monday, on the company’s quarterly earnings call. With advertisers investing millions of dollars on commercials, the first logical question to ask is simple:  What ROI are we getting from our commercial and when can we expect to see it?

It’s quite an arduous task to create an experience that connects with your audience, while also trying to figure out how to best leverage social media and other channels to continue the right level of buzz.  However, it would not be prudent to forget about creating an experience that can be measured and monitored over time.  Every campaign needs a strategy, beyond the storyboard, to ensure that the impact felt on the bottom line can be attributed back to the investments made during the big game.

With the innovative creativity of some of the ads, we were a bit surprised by the lack of  tangible ways to create a measurable experience in most of the commercials we saw.  The lack of hashtags, custom links, calls to action, etc. were a bit alarming when you think about the size of these investments.  There were some standouts, such as Tide, who did a phenomenal job of tying together the customer journey and creating a measurable “buzz” for their investments. But, we wonder what will be done with that data?  What KPIs were set to monitor over time, and for how long, to determine whether or not revenue generated over the next 30, 60, or 90 days was a direct result of the exposure during the Super Bowl?  We also thought it was interesting to see folks like Pine-Sol capitalize on Mr. Clean’s investment to make themselves part of the conversation.  It would be fascinating to measure the impact that interaction has on both brands over time in the coming weeks.

TV investments remain a valuable tool for marketers, and they provide access to larger audiences than any video on YouTube does today. The big game brought in 111.3 million viewers1, proving that TV isn’t even close to dead – but throwing money into TV without a measurement plan should be.  We work with clients on a daily basis to measure the effectiveness and inter-relation of their media channel investments and with modern advancements in the industry, we no longer live in an era  where the impact of traditional channels (TV, OOH, Print, Radio, etc.) can’t be measured in the same way digital channels can.  With advancements come a set of new and unique challenges, it’s not an easy task, but with the right level of support and effort it can be eye-opening for your brand.

What did you think of the commercials?  Were there some you thought had a better measurement plan than others?  We’d love to continue the conversation and share some of our tips and tricks for monitoring the ROI of your investments.

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