Why Brands Will Drop the Ball During the Superbowl

Posted on February 2nd 2014

Why Brands Will Drop the Ball During the Superbowl

Take a minute, step back, and just appreciate the amount of noise out there. Here's a quick roundup of what major brands have in store for us during the Superbowl 2014.


What they thought - "Everybody's so focused on the Superbowl. What can we do to create buzz before the Superbowl?" 

What they did - Created a contest with one winner getting to showcase their commercial during the Superbowl. 

Why they failed - The final ads are terrible. These ads try so hard to get some sort of viral element in them, that they lose the overall message completely. They try to be funny, and fail miserably. 

What they could have done - They could have focused on the strong brand loyalty that consumers have with Doritos and created a better campaign based on an idea that was A) Current or B) Memorable. Doritos is an FMCG brand that depends on strong recall and preference during the purchase process. 



What they thought - "What can we do to make us talk-worthy this quarter? Oh, and let's tap into the younger demographic while we're at it"

What they did - Created a teaser campaign which showcased a few snippets of what was in store for the audience. They then released the complete ad titled "Ian up for anything", where a random guy was chosen in a bar and taken through a whole bunch of ridiculous situations. *Spoiler Alert* - He plays ping pong with Arnold Schwarzenegger, whose wearing a pair of short-shorts

Why they failed - They made Arnold Schwarzenegger wear short-shorts

What they could have done - Prank-vertising and real-vertising are two concepts that I don't get as a marketer. What's so entertaining about getting random people to go through a series of events. I didn't understand why the #Carrielives Coffee shop video got 25M hits on YouTube. Anyways, what Budlight could have done, was to focus on the product features instead of creating something viral. Everybody's gonna do something viral this year, why not focus on the product instead?

BudLight could have made the people watching the Superbowl crave a Budlight with an ad that focused on how people could use a few cold beers when they're hanging with their Buds watching the Superbowl. They could have cemented themselves as a ritual artifact during this most holy time of the American Football culture. People should have associated a cold refreshing BudLight with the game-time rituals of watching the Superbowl, instead of making the ex-governer of California wear short shorts.

There's a lot more examples out there and I've added a few videos below. Drop in a comment or two, or hit me up on Twitter. What's your take on all the madness out there?

Here's a complete list from Adage -







Sanchit Khera

Hi there. My name is Sanchit Khera, and I blog about marketing, technology, and psychology. Like many of us, I too get frustrated about the quality of advertising and marketing out there. It’s 2013, and we’re still selling products and services like its 1969. From the outdated relics that make up our higher education systems to the flurry of internet sites that offer garbage for backlinks, I have been through it all. So these articles on SocialMediaToday are my attempt at making sense of all the information out there, and to help marketers and myself make the best decisions for our businesses and our customers.

See Full Profile >