Saturday, February 2, 2013

Super Bowl 2013 TV ads integrate social media: Ask consumers for their help

"The Super Bowl isn't for kids, I had a great time though and it was worth every nickel of it because by doing this lame piece about the game I can put it on my expense account."
~~ Andy Rooney
, (January 14, 1919 – November 4, 2011) American radio and television writer; Most notable for his weekly broadcast "A Few Minutes with Andy Rooney," and part of the CBS News program 60 Minutes from 1978 to 2011. His final regular appearance on 60 Minutes aired October 2, 2011. He died one month later, on November 4, 2011, at age 92.

With the digital ecosystem (e.g. Twitter, YouTube, Hulu, Facebook, etc.) in constant motion, comes a wealth of options for advertising campaigns. This is becoming more prevalent as more creative advertisements rely on user participation via social media and crowd sourcing.

The decision of whether to release a Super Bowl ad in advance, just have a teaser campaign or hold off altogether until Super Bowl Sunday is what many CMO's consider.

Particularly in light of the fact that the Super Bowl 2012 online audience was 3 times larger than the reported 111 million Super Bowl 2012 TV viewership -- supporting the trend that television audiences are being replaced by the online and mobile audiences and social media's ripple effect spreads information quickly.

Practically all of the Super Bowl 2013 ads have been pre-released online, with the exception of a few who held off and implemented "teaser ads."

Overall, the advertising strategy and theme revolves around user engagement which is why the existing trend of teaser campaigns is slowly but surely being replaced by TV commercials that request consumers help them by casting their vote online through social media.
Besides the obvious increase in exposure, last year roughly 1 and half million consumers viewed Super Bowl 2012 ads on YouTube whereas a total of over 9 million viewed them prior to Super Bowl Sunday. (source: also listed in "additional information" below)

From Coke asking consumers to choose their favorite ending and Pepsi asking for fan photos that will appear during the Pepsi Halftime show, to Audi asking viewers to share their brave moments, Doritos® wanting consumers to pick which ad should run on Super Bowl Sunday, and Toyota asking consumers to share their wish on Twitter, it is apparent the cultural movement of sports, particularly the Super Bowl, is progressively shifting towards social media and crowd sourcing.

TV advertisers who do not integrate internet relevancy and social media campaigns stand a great chance of losing leverage and compromising the brand.

Of the seven user participation ads, Audi, Coke and Doritos will show the winning TV ad on Super Bowl Sunday with the help of on consumer votes. Budweiser, with a reputation of having he most original and creative, implemented teaser ads only with no user participation.

A total of seven advertisers, roughly a fifth (or 19%) of the total 36 Super Bowl advertisers included user participation that involved heavy social media and crowd sourcing.

Below is a list of the seven advertisers who implemented social media and user participation in their advertising campaigns:

Audi – Prom Night features 3 videos “Worth It,” “Buddies” and “Tradition. Viewers Share your brave moment, and vote online at and can choose how it should end by picking 1 of the 3 videos. The final spot was announced on Jan. 27 and will air during the Super Bowl.

Coke CokeChase contest – a bus of showgirls, caravan of bad landers and posse of cowboys all on a desert compete for a GIANT bottle of coke. Vote on who you want to win the chase on the Web site.

Doritos Frito Lay – “Crash the Superbowl” lists the 5 video finalists on Facebook; to name a few - “Fetch,” “Road Chip,” and “Fashionista Daddy,” on Facebook and asks for your vote.

Lincoln – “The Story Behind the Script” ad Stars NFL Emmitt Smith, the DJ voice only talking to the lady in the car. Curated by Jimmy Fallon (who collected the script ideas). The “” and share road trip experience, took 6 million tweets and Jimmy Fallon picked the ones he liked to create the 30 secon spot for the 3rd, quarter; Viewers can also go see the 90 second version online.

Pepsi, Sponsor of the Halftime show, asks viewers to participate by tweeting what’s happening (ended Jan 11th) at #PepsiHalftime pepsi. The photo submission ended 1/21/13

Pizza Hut's "HUT HUT HUT" commercial wants viewers to believe that the "hut" shouted by quarterbacks at the center actually is for the Hut in Pizza Hut. In return, Pizza Hut salutes quarterbacks in this year's Super Bowl commercial “Thanks for the shout outs,” Now share your best "hut hut hut" at

Toyota, Let’s Go Places #WishGranted Asks viewers to tweet their wish at #wishgranted where Kelly Cuoco will grant some wishes. Embedded video

What do you think? Are the social media and pre-releases of Super Bowl 2013 ads good thing for user engagement or do you prefer to be surprised on Super Bowl Sunday?

There’s still time for some advertisers to participate and to join as an online panelist to rank the Super Bowl with USA Today’s Ad Meter.

For a FREE pdf of an updated CBS Super Bowl 2013 TV ad grid, email gmbdaly [at] gmail [dot] com.

All photos courtesy of Wikimedia and screen shots taken from video and websites. All other photos will be credited as required.

Please visit this blog frequently and share this with your social media and professional network. Thanks.

Additional resources:
Spoiler alert: Super Bowl ads are already on YouTube
Super Bowl 2013 TV ads
Super Bowl 2013 Ads on Facebook
Super Bowl Commercial Time Is a Sellout, The New York Times
AdAge Advertisers in Super Bowl 2013, AdAge
UPDATED: Everything We Know About The Super Bowl ad Lineup So Far, Business Insider
GM to Forgo Pricey Super Bowl Ads, Wall Street Journal
Be a part of the USA TODAY Ad Meter panel!, USA TODAY
Advertisers Give Sneak Peek of Super Bowl Commercials Online, CBS San Francisco
Should Super Bowl Ads Be Released Early?, Sports Business Daily
Some SUPERBOWL Ad Resources 2012, AllThingsDigitalMarketing Blog
Kate Upton Mercedes Benz Super Bowl 2013 ad video, ABC
Best Buy Banking on Amy Poehler To Break Its Super Bowl Ad Losing Streak, The Consumerist
The Big, Big Business of Super Bowl XLVI, The Fiscal Times
Super Bowl ads: Coca-Cola says goodbye to bears, hello to 'Mirage', Newsday
Coca Chase 2013 Ad, Youtube; Vote on who you want to win at
Doritos® Teddybear Prison themed ad “Crash The Super Bowl,” YouTube; This year a public vote will choose one Doritos ad to air during the Super Bowl
How much did the 2013 finalists spend on their Crash the Super Bowl entries?, Video Contest News
Super Bowl’s Greatest Commercials 2013, CBS Press Express
Kate Upton stuns in a 'leaked' Super Bowl commercial,
The Best Super Bowl AdMeters Ever, USA Today Ad Meter
Super Bowl XLVII New Orleans Host Committee


  1. Enjoyed your article, like the way you embedded the ads, and found your insights regarding user participation advertising very relevant to the digital marketing and online audiences. In regards to your question, I think social media is becoming more and more important in communicating ads, news and various information. Online audiences are on average 3X larger than it’s respective TV audience so the “surprise effect” of a Super Bowl 2013 ad is slowly becoming a thing of the past. Let’s not lose sight of the game, this game got very exciting after the black out. And I wonder if the lighting effects from Pepsi’s Halftime Show are what caused the black out.

  2. I like the Andy Rooney quote, he was an amazing journalist and it was great that you brought him to life in your article. Also the Tide ad with Joe Montana artwork ketchup squirt was hilarious.

  3. Interesting how you describe the user participation ads for Super Bowl 2013. Didn’t realize so many are beginning to have this. The game was amazing, especially how the 49ers ended up 3 point behind, the black out appeared to tire Baltimore even though they still won. Great game.

  4. Yeah for Baltimore Ravens. This year there were great Super Bowl ads and there is growing momentum with the use of social media. I actually like the idea of seeing the ads before Super Bowl. I am amazed at the increase of viewership with online audiences.

  5. Congrats to Ravens. Very interesting blog. To answer your question, I don’t mind seeing the ads before Super Bowl Sunday, I actually prefer that so I can really think about them and cast my vote on the various social media sources. My favorite was the Budweiser Clydesdale ad, love those beautiful horses.

  6. What a great line up of ads this year. Really interesting to learn about the ads with interactivity and user participation.

  7. This is awesome of you to post this information. What a great blog you have. I didn’t realize the mass audience online versus traditional TV audience. Although I appreciate a surprise ad every now and then, social media has taken such a prominent form I prefer to view ads in advance and online. It puts me in the driver seat, I can view it as many times as I want -- virtually and mobile anywhere with the use of my iPhone.

  8. I like your allthingsdigitalmarketing blog and the way you incorporate various articles. To answer your question, I prefer the social media and pre-release ad campaigns over the surprise of seeing the ad for the first time on Super Bowl day.

  9. Sad that the Coke commercial is being labeled “racist” all because the dessert has an Arabs with Camels. Dugh! Don’t desserts have Camels and Arabs? I really don’t understand but I do not believe this ad should offend Muslims. This ad was just so interesting. I heard many thought the ad was also a tribute to the movie “Lawrence of Arabia.” Anyway, the showgirls won, lol.

  10. I like the voter participation and getting their consumers involved in the creative, yet on the other hand, I like the excitement and surprise element of seeing the ad on Super Bowl Sunday.

  11. Super Bowl ads are always so clever and I can never pick the top. Leave it to the surveys and polls. However I really liked the ETrade Baby ad, more of the same but the ads are so memorable.