Social Commerce

Super Bowl and Social Media – It's Synergy Jim, but not as we know it

Synergy was the name of the game for yesterday’s 2010 XLIV Super Bowl advertising extravaganza: Combining PR-infused ‘Peacock’s Tail Advertising’ (hey, we’ve got so much money to spend on apparently wasteful ads we must have good genes (AKA the handicap principle)) with social media marketing – to get a bigger bang for a very expensive advertising buck. It’s a new spin on social media optimization – where social media optimizes television advertising.

So Super Bowl advertisers were busy tweeting and facebooking in the run up to, and during yesterday’s win by the New Orleans Saints – using two basic strategies:

But did it work? Did social media-optimized Super Bowl ads deliver for advertisers? Was there, in other words, a synergistic effect in coupling television advertising with social media marketing? We don’t know yet, and of course it all depends on what advertisers were after (saliency, shifting stock, building market share or some softer brand-building effect – conversations, reputation).

But there’s one area where social media / TV ad synergy may already have already paid off – and that’s the using social media as a test bed for TV advertising.

For instance, early results indicate that the best Super Bowl ad – as voted by the audience – was the spawn of social media (the Doritos home-made ad (Anti-Bark)) (see below for votes).  This, coupled with Google’s $5m decision to buy a 2010 Super Bowl TV advertising slot to broadcast it’s most popular YouTube ad – Parisian Love – may be an indication of things to come – social media as test bed for advertising.

It’s synergy Jim, but not as we know it.

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Chartered psychologist specialising in consumer behaviour, wellbeing and technology. Certified CX professional experienced in Design Thinking. A researcher, writer and speaker, Paul is head of Digital Insight at SYZYGY.

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