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SBD/January 31, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship
Pepsico Turns To Elton John, Regis Philbin To Give SB Ads Some Star Power
Published January 31, 2012
LIFE IS A HIGHWAY: Honda's Acura brand is running its first Super Bowl spot this year, a 60-second ad titled "Transactions" scheduled for the third quarter. The ad will feature comedians Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno with the NSX concept car (Acura). AD AGE’s Stephen Williams reported Seinfeld in the ad goes to "absurd lengths to bribe the man who holds the rights to buy the first 2015 Acura NSX supercar.” It was created by RPA, Santa Monica. An additional Honda ad for the CR-V model, which features Matthew Broderick reviving his famed Ferris Bueller character, will run “at the end of the third quarter” (ADAGE.com, 1/30). Entertainment Weekly Exec Editor Kristen Baldwin said the Bueller ad is “really is tapping into nostalgia of that character.” CBS News' Seth Doane said Baldwin noted the spot “is already cutting through the clutter of Super Bowl Sunday.” Baldwin said of the Honda CR-V not being equal to the Ferrari used in the film, “Having a sense of humor about it and having a little knowing wink to the viewer is very smart” ("CBS This Morning," CBS, 1/31)....Toyota yesterday premiered an extended version of its Super Bowl commercial. The 60-second "Reinvented" spot is available for preview at Toyota's YouTube page. Toyota will make its first Super Bowl appearance in three years with a 30-second version of the ad during Sunday's game. The ad shows a humorous take on potential day-to-day experiences and items that could have been reinvented. The ad, created by Toyota's agency of record Saatchi & Saatchi, L.A., is slated to be broadcast during the third quarter of the game. A second 30-second spot will air at halftime. Toyota's luxury brand Lexus will also air a 30-second spot during the first half of the game promoting its new GS series (THE DAILY)....Audi will begin airing its 60-second Super Bowl spot this week between 12:00-3:00am, what the automaker calls "vampire hours," on select cable networks. Audi's ad features a vampire party (Audi).
WELCOME TO THE SHOW: H&M is running its first-ever Super Bowl ad this year, and is Fox Business’ Cheryl Casone noted the Sweden-based clothier is “making a huge gamble.” But H&M North America President Daniel Kulle said, “After 11 years in America, H&M has expanded to 236 stores. So now we see that we have the volume to go national. ... We want to convey and show that H&M is here to stay and win the American customers’ heart.” Casone noted H&M is also going to have a “huge Times Square billboard” and the company is really “going national with this thing.” Kulle said all the collaborations the company has had with designers and celebrity endorsers “has been very successful for us, driving a new customer group to us, and also they come and start shopping, and then they find the rest of our assortment” (Fox Business, 1/30).
OTHER HIGHLIGHTS: Walt Disney Pictures announced it is running a 30-second spot in Sunday’s game giving fans a chance to enter The Journey to the Super Bowl Sweepstakes. The winner will receive a trip for two the Super Bowl XVLII next year in New Orleans. A code will be revealed during the “John Carter” trailer and viewers can then go to NFL.com/JohnCarter and input the code to be entered into the sweepstakes (Disney)....Paramount Pictures will also air trailers for two films during the game -- "G.I. Joe: Retaliation" and "The Dictator" (THE DAILY)....USA TODAY’s Bruce Horovitz notes not only are Volkswagen, Anheuser-Busch InBev and Skechers “placing dogs in their Super Bowl spots, but the dogs are mostly the stars.” Dogs this year “may even outnumber cute babies” (USA TODAY, 1/31).
WATCH EARLY AND OFTEN: ABC News’ Bill Weir said if fans "haven't seen all the best ads before the game, you're not paying attention.” Ad Age TV Editor Brian Steinberg said if companies want people talking about their ad “ahead of time, get people excited about watching the ad. They’ll watch the ad and then maybe they go and post it, tweet about it. That's a dynamic that more marketers are trying to harness.” Steinberg said there will still be “some companies that go old-school and stay mum until the day" of the game, but “that's the exception rather than the rule.” ABC News' David Wright said, “This year, the rule seems to be get it out early, generate some buzz. By Super Bowl Sunday the only new thing may be the game, and maybe the halftime show” (“Nightline,” ABC, 1/30). USA TODAY’s Laura Petrecca notes Super Bowl advertisers are “working ahead of Sunday’s game more than ever before.” They want viewers “to actively seek out their big-budget TV ads and to get involved with the digital and social-media efforts of which the commercials are a centerpiece.” Coca-Cola North America Senior VP/Integrated Marketing Platforms & Content Pio Schunker: “You want to make sure that you get the most out of what is a very big and very expensive event.” Horizon Media Senior VP & Dir of Research Brad Adgate said that by touting their ads early, marketers “hope to stand out from the game-day commercial clutter” (USA TODAY, 1/31).
THE GREAT DEBATE: In Milwaukee, Duane Dudek noted commercials are "meant to sell you something and not tell you something," so why have Super Bowl ads "turned into catchy and clever short films designed to entertain rather than move merchandise?” Branding expert Rob Frankel said ads today are less focused "on why you should perceive a product as the only solution to your problems and feel compelled to buy it" than on creating brand awareness. Frankel: "Just because you know something doesn't mean you like it." Frankel admitted Super Bowl ads can work for "existing brands introducing a new product or a new brand coming on to the market" (JSONLINE.com, 1/29).