SBD/Issue 245/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Automakers' Opinions Differ On Value Of Super Bowl Advertising

Ford Marketer Indicates The Company Will Not
Advertise During February's Super Bowl XLV

Ford Group VP/Global Marketing, Sales & Service Jim Farley "seems intent for Ford to stay on the sidelines" next February for another Super Bowl, but GM VP/U.S. Marketing Joel Ewanick has "already signaled a different game plan," according to Dale Buss of BRANDCHANNEL.com. Farley contends that the Super Bowl has "faded in significance for auto advertisers." He said the Super Bowl "doesn't matter." Ford instead has been "scoring big points lately with online and social-media campaigns." A Ford spokesperson sought to clarify Farley's comments, saying, "One ad in the Super Bowl doesn’t guarantee that the brand will improve. The point that Jim was making was that we’re taking a more holistic approach to our communications strategy that goes beyond one Super Bowl ad." Rival automaker GM, however, will advertise in Super Bowl XLV after a two-year absence from the game, and Ewanick "plans to use the occasion as the big stage for his new branding campaign for Chevrolet." Ewanick indicated that he "wants to get Chevrolet back into the business of emotionally connecting with consumers, and still there may be no better way to do that than pulling off a bravura Super Bowl turn" (BRANDCHANNEL.com, 8/30). When asked if Ford plans to advertise during the Super Bowl, Farley said, "It really doesn't matter. Super Bowl doesn't matter" (AUTOMOTIVE NEWS, 8/30 issue).

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