Why we don’t suggest Super Bowl commercials for our clients

The Super Bowl has long been considered the pinnacle of football season, and similarly, Super Bowl commercials are often considered the pinnacle of television advertising.
Super Bowl commercials – especially those early on in the game – can create enormous buzz that has the potential to linger for months, if not years. Whether or not the game is a snooze-fest or a blowout, people will always be talking about the products and their commercials.

Super Bowl commercials for beer have become legendary, as have food and soft drinks. New car models are revealed, and it’s a perfect time for “exclusive” sneak peeks of new movies and shows – even though broadcasting to millions of viewers means the exact opposite of exclusive. I digress.

So the question is, should every product or service aim for a Super Bowl presence?


For one thing Super Bowl commercials come with an enormous price tag. AdWeek indicated that in 2016, the price for a 30-second chunk of airtime is at least $5 million, an 11 percent increase since last year. As smart advertisers will tell you, one ad won’t be nearly as effective as several, as frequency and advertising regularity helps to get you noticed and maintain user recognition.

So unless you’re already a powerhouse brand like the Coca-Cola or Budweiser, you may be a little hesitant on shelling out a year’s worth of marketing dollars for one campaign.

To speak to the importance of target audiences, Super Bowl viewers are also about as general as you can get. The figure has fluctuated from 39 million to 114.4 mil viewers over the years with some – key wording being “some” – viewers of this mass audience likely needing and wanting your product. However, there’s an overwhelming reality that majority of the viewers won’t even be interested.

If you’re a smaller company, it’s imperative to have a strong idea of your audience and target customers with a solid marketing strategy in place. Due to the nature of your audience, the exposure to a wider viewer base may not even be that beneficial in the long run.

Perhaps it might make more sense to focus your marketing efforts in other areas like: training your team to provide better customer service, making sure your employees have the latest skills and technology they need to be successful, or pursuing various community efforts to build positive brand recognition within your networks.

But, if you – or your decision-makers – are firm on “wanting to do something for the Super Bowl,” there are still many ways to get creative, like tying your marketing efforts into “the big game.” (The NFL is pretty choosy who can use ‘Super Bowl’ in their promotions.) You could also consider incorporating football themes and terms into your social media strategies to pull traction back to your business.

All in all, while we all enjoy the entertainment value of Super Bowl commercials, from a pure advertising point of view, perhaps it may be wiser to allocate your $5 million on other hyper-focused, market validated avenues.

Need some further expert advice about creating a campaign? Contact our media team here!

And More