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Volume 24 No. 158
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More Than Six Automakers To Run Super Bowl Ads, Though Some '13 Advertisers Drop Out

More than a half-dozen automakers are "expected to showcase their newest vehicles come February in Super Bowl ads," according to Melissa Burden of the DETROIT NEWS. GM, Hyundai, Kia, Volkswagen, Toyota, Audi and Jaguar have all "announced plans to run commercials during Super Bowl XLVIII." GM CMO/Global Chevrolet Tim Mahoney said, "We bought two 60-second spots. We may parse them, but we’re in for a couple." Mahoney would not "divulge the automaker’s specific plans for its ads, or what Chevrolet vehicles the ads will feature." However, he said that it is "important to be back in the game." Mahoney: "It’s not just a North American phenomenon. With the importance of social media and things like YouTube, these really become global ads." Kia, Toyota, Volkswagen and Audi also are "expected to run one-minute ads." Meanwhile, Ford "hinted it has something in the works for the Super Bowl." Ford Exec VP/Global Marketing, Sales & Service Jim Farley said, "We have very exciting plans for that period of time. We definitely will have a strategy for the Super Bowl." Lincoln Global Communications Manager Stephane Cesareo said that the brand, which aired spots during the '13 game, has "no plans to advertise" in the '14 game. Chrysler "would not confirm if it has any commercials planned for the Super Bowl," but it is "widely expected to return after three years of buzz-creating bowl ads." A spokesperson for Mercedes-Benz USA, which advertised during the '13 Super Bowl, said that the automaker has "no plans to advertise" in the '14 game. GM also will "air Chevrolet and Cadillac ads" during the Sochi Games in February on NBC (DETROIT NEWS, 1/7).

GAME ON: ABC's Dan Abrams noted the NFL playoffs "have barely begun, but Super Bowl ad mania is already under way." Old Spice has gotten "out of the gate already, generating ad buzz weeks ahead of Super Bowl Sunday." The brand's "Mom Song" campaign debuted last weekend, and Abrams noted the ad is a "promising start." Abrams: "Prices for the ads that run during the big game are said to be higher than ever before at $4 million for 30 seconds. Maybe that's why Old Spice got a jump start, so we and other media can add to the value." However, he said, "Whether those pricey spots do anything to boost sales, that's another question" ("Nightline," ABC, 1/6). The WALL STREET JOURNAL's Robin Kawakami wrote many viewers "wondered why Old Spice didn’t wait for the ratings bonanza of the Super Bowl" to debut the ad. A P&G spokesperson indicated that Old Spice "doesn’t have an ad buy in for the Super Bowl yet" (, 1/6).

AD AGE's Jack Neff cited a study by Tuscon-based research firm Communicus as showing that 60% of Super Bowl ads it tests "don't increase purchase or purchase intent." Communicus CEO Jeri Smith said that Super Bowl spots "do better than average in ad awareness, with 44% of people remembering they've seen an average Super Bowl ad vs. 32% for other ads that get similar gross-rating-point exposure." However, she said that because "the creative often focuses less on the brands ... people not surprisingly remember the brands less often in Super Bowl ads." She added that people people who remember seeing a Super Bowl ad "recall the brand 35% of the time vs. about half the time for other ads." Smith said that the Super Bowl "works better for new products" (, 1/6).