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Our Advertising MVPs: Super Bowl Spots That Scored Big

Over 100 million people tuned in to watch Super Bowl LIII … only to see one touchdown, two field goals and a so-so halftime show. As a Texas-born-and-bred agency, we had little investment in the battle between the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams. The one thing that did keep us entertained? The commercials.

According to CNBC, a 30-second ad in this year’s game cost $5.25 million. This high price tag makes it even more vital for brands not only to connect with their target audience but also to disrupt the crowded air waves. Check out our take on the ads that actually put some points on the board.   

Bud Light

Have enough ad spend to “go for two”? That’s exactly what Bud Light did with not one but two highly successful ads during the big game. The first, “Joust,” was in partnership with HBO’s Game of Thrones and teased its upcoming final season. Up next was Bud Light throwing shade to its competitors’ use of corn syrup in “Special Delivery.” The ad supported a campaign strategy to separate Bud Light from the pack, including the rollout of new packaging that highlights the minimalism of its ingredients on every label. Their social team carried the banter to Twitter through witty responses with fans. Let’s just say, competitors weren’t exactly thrilled. However, all is far in love and advertising, and Bud Light claimed victory as the most-mentioned brand in posts related to the Super Bowl, garnering 22,500 mentions according to Adweek.

NFL

The National Football League ranked first in USA TODAY’s Ad Meter based on consumer rating for their “100-Year Game” spot. Stars of NFL past and present gathered for a black-tie dinner, which quickly turned into an all-out brawl after the golden football took a “FUMBLE!” Emmitt Smith, our very own Dallas Cowboys legend and client, joined in on the action to remind everyone of his record stats. The commercial embraced the rich heritage of the NFL while also showcasing its inclusiveness and influence on American culture.

Amazon

With “Not Everything Makes the Cut,” Amazon took a fun approach to this year’s ad by introducing some of the Alexa-powered devices that didn’t quite pass the quality check. From a podcast toothbrush to an Alexa dog collar, Amazon pokes fun at itself with rejected products that wreak havoc on poor, unsuspecting celebrities. Appearances by Harrison Ford, Abbi Jacobson, Ilana Glazer, Forest Whitaker and NASA twins Mark and Scott Kelly scored well with audiences, leading to a second place ranking in USA TODAY’s Ad Meter.