4 Ways you can apply lessons from Superbowl commercials to your business

For those of you in Antartica last weekend (or non-sports fans), the Superbowl took place last Sunday, and the best football players competed with the best ad agencies for the limelight. You might think Superbowl ads don’t apply to your business because there’s no way you would ever be able to afford one, but all the ads had takeaways that can help with advertising and marketing for any budget.

1. Add a social layer.
If you noticed, almost every ad in the Superbowl had a social media element to it. Some had hashtags associated with them, such as Audi’s vampire commercial’s #SoLongVampires. Others, such as Bud Light’s commercial, encouraged watchers to go to Facebook for more content. While you don’t necessarily have to have a hashtag, promoting your specials on Facebook, or offering extra discounts to users who share your content can help add a social layer to any promotion you do.

Audi’s Vampire Commercial

2. Make it unique.
Every Superbowl commercial has a unique factor to it – usually humor. Do your ad spots say or show anything to separate your business from your competitors? Beware of bad jokes or going overboard, however. Your commercial may go viral for the wrong reasons.

3. Don’t just sell your product.
Not many people want to hear numbers about how your car has 6hp more than the other guys’, or why the hot tub you sell has jets that deliver 26psi more than your competitors’. Instead, focus on the lifestyle aspect of your product. VW’s commercial showed a dog getting in shape so he could chase a New Beetle, and became one of the most watched TV spots because of it’s unique approach.

VW’s Dog Commercial

4. Don’t jab at the competition
Chevy learned that lesson the hard way this year with their Superbowl ad that said Ford drivers didn’t make it through the Mayan apocalypse, but Chevy drivers did. While it generated some buzz, it didn’t do anything to help the brand at all, and Ford released a statement taking offense to the ad as well.

Let us know of any other Superbowl commercials you enjoyed in the comments.


The History of Advertising

Though advertising has been around for a while, it’s a lot older than most people think. In 2000 BC, the Ancient Egyptians advertised by carving public notices into steel. Now, four thousand years later, we’ve gotten to the point where online advertising has overtaken print and radio to become the second biggest medium for ad spend.

Along the way there have been a few forms of advertising that we wish weren’t invented– we’re looking at you, infomercials and pop-ups — but overall, ads have created a convenient way for businesses to get the word out about their products.

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