Fans tune into the Super Bowl every year not only for the football game but some of the best and funniest ads of the year that sponsors dole out millions for, airing brief clips that are viewed by 100 million Americans who will hopefully buy their product.
The Fox network charged advertisers this year up to $7 million for a 30-second ad that brands salivated over, according to Deadline. Considering the money made off of a Super Bowl ad, companies literally fight over spending millions for a few seconds of air-play.
“Super Bowl Sunday means we get to watch great ads with football breaks in between,” Lucas Bongioanni, who is the executive creative director at the community agency, told the New York Post.
Take for instance John Travolta for TMobile home internet recreating “Summer Nights” from Grease. It’s definitely must-see TV.
This one is the winner for me! It was a great year for Super Bowl ads! https://t.co/u0Hu9QMlve
— TallTanOne (@TallTanOne) February 13, 2023
That’s one example of a big name and nostalgia that companies use to make a memorable ad and there were quite a few in 2023. Software and streaming companies stepped in as well to capture that segment of the market.
“This year felt like half was nostalgia and half was more future-facing,” Bongioanni claimed. “Newcomers and veteran brands both went big.”
High-powered executives called the best and the worst ads this year in a race for advertising gold in a game that saw the Kansas City Chiefs claim victory over the Philadelphia Eagles 38 to 35.
Netflix and General Motors seem to have come out on top as well. They ran a 60-second joint venture ad featuring Will Ferrell and zombies. The comedian promoted the streaming service while noting that it will include more electric vehicles in movies and shows… all while getting swarmed and bitten by the undead, popping into “Bridgerton,” “Squid Game”, “Stranger Things,” and cruising with more zombies.
(Video Credit: General Motors)
“I mean, we did it so I’m a little biased here but hear me out,” he stated. “This spot’s biggest accomplishment is to look simple while delivering a complex message and still be entertaining from top to bottom.”
Chris Graves, who is the chief creative officer at Team One, told the New York Post in an interview that the commercial was a success because it combined two big brands in an entertaining way that was easy to understand.
“Brand crossovers can be complicated and messy — especially in the Super Bowl environment where entertainment is king,” Graves noted. “One brand always seems to get the short end of the stick — but I think this one works pretty seamlessly.”
He also asserted that “both brands will get a lift from this relationship” and said that Netflix fans probably would “enjoy and appreciate the nuance and humor” of the ad.
A commercial for Workday showcased rockers Billy Idol, Ozzy Osborne, Joan Jett, and Paul Stanley in an ad about American office culture where they chastised workers for calling themselves “rockstars.” Workday is a software company that provides cloud applications for finance, HR, and planning
(Video Credit: Workday)
“We know that using Workday for your finance and HR makes you great at your job… but it doesn’t make you a ‘rockstar,’” the rockers informed executives.
“Being called out for abusing the term “rockstar” in the office is a funny notion. It’s not the first jab at corporate culture we’ve seen, but it’s a fresh take and entertaining to watch,” Bongioanni commented.
“I started with no idea what Workday does. In the end, it was fun enough for me to search ‘What is Workday?’ Little victories,” Graves told the New York Post.
Gen-Z superstar rapper Jack Harlow starred in a Doritos commercial that was also a hit.
(Video Credit: Doritos)
“You’re going to quit rap to play a triangle?” rapper Missy Elliot asks Harlow appearing in the commercial that also featured Elton John.
Another Doritos commercial for PopCorners featured “Breaking Bad” stars Brian Cranston and Aaron Paul.
(Video Credit: Doritos)
“Among the many reunions in this year’s ads, this one felt good to me,” Graves remarked. “I’ve missed Brian Cranston and Aaron Paul in these roles. I was pleasantly surprised to see them, and the brand match seems like a smart one.”
“Extra points for getting the two main characters in and Vince Gilligan [of “Breaking Bad” fame] to direct. Brian and Aaron cooking baked snacks is something we all like to see,” Bongioanni said.
Then there were ads that just kind of fell flat.
Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg pretty much face-planted in an ad for Skechers.
(Video Credit: Skechers)
“I love that Skechers is aiming for the stars with a clear point of view,” Bongioanni said concerning the commercial. “I don’t fully agree with the celeb selection here, but they’re on the right path.”
The Hellmann’s ad with Jon Hamm and Brie Larson stuck inside a refrigerator didn’t go over well either.
(Video Credit: Hellmann’s)
The ad was a play on ham and brie cheese and leftovers. Enough said.
“Some celebrity ads leave you with a new respect for those celebs, and some leave you with less. This is one is the latter for me,” Graves quipped. “Ham and Brie? Turns them into easy gags and feels a bit too simplistic… Plus, I hate seeing Don Draper [Jon Hamm’s most famous character] do something he probably would never have approved.”
Squarespace put out a futuristic ad on a website building websites with Adam Driver. Experts were divided on whether it was one of the best this year.
(Video Credit: Squarespace)
Bongioanni contended that the ad was “shot beautifully,” but freelance creative director Pieter Konickx asserted that the behind-the-scenes footage released on YouTube was far more compelling.
(Video Credit: Squarespace)
“That’s real gold,” he insisted. “That is comedic genius and in my opinion turned out much better than the main commercial.”
At $7 million for an ad, behind-the-scenes footage outshining the actual commercial could be seen as disastrous for the brand.
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Republished with permission from American Wire News Service
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