We are just days away from the biggest advertising event of the year—the Super Bowl.
This year the advertising circus is already well underway and the excitement is mounting. As brands try to get their messages out ahead of the game, here are several advertisers to focus on.
Chevrolet: General Motors passed on the Super Bowl last year. The company is now back and will be one of the biggest advertisers this year, running a series of commercials for Chevrolet. This is an important moment for GM; the company is rebounding after a trip through bankruptcy and has a new marketing team in place. Will Chevrolet deliver? There are two particular challenges for Chevrolet. First, will the spots stand out in what promises to be a Super Bowl full of auto ads? Second, will Chevrolet deliver a differentiating benefit?
CareerBuilder: This year CareerBuilder is bringing back the chimps. The company used these characters in 2005 and 2006 with great success. After trying to recreate the magic with a number of different campaigns, CareerBuilder is returning to the proven equity. Will the chimps work again?
ABInBev: The big name in Super Bowl advertising is Anheuser-Busch, now part of brewing giant ABInBev. Bud and Bud Light traditionally finish at the top of the popularity polls. Will they do it again this year? For the first time, the company is advertising Stella Artois on the Super Bowl. This brand could get a big bounce.
HomeAway: HomeAway is back for a second year. The vacation home rental site is going to run a rather epic and potentially controversial commercial. The challenge with high-production commercials like this is that the message and brand can get lost; HomeAway has to make sure the branding and benefit both come through.
GoDaddy: Once again, GoDaddy is back with the GoDaddy girls. The question: at what point does this campaign wear out? It hasn’t been particularly popular from the start, but it has clearly worked. GoDaddy is the most creatively consistent advertiser on the game this year. Is that a positive or a negative?
Doritos/Pepsi Max: Pepsi Max is crashing the Doritos’ Crash the Super Bowl event. Consumers can create spots for either brand. Doritos had great success with the promotion in prior year. Will it work again, now expanded to include Pepsi Max?
Audi/BMW/Mercedes/Kia/Hyundai: Will any of these car brands stand out this year? Or will they all blur together. We might see a lot of beautiful pictures of cars zooming along curving roads. That traditional footage won’t be enough to stand out this year.
Groupon: Google, a new Super Bowl advertiser in 2010, finished at the top of the Kellogg Super Bowl Advertising Review. Will another dot-com newcomer pull it off this year? Watch Groupon, a new and unexpected Super Bowl advertiser.
There is an interesting story behind every advertiser in the Super Bowl. As you watch each ad, remember that a team of people spent the last six months or more desperately trying to create a powerful spot.
Careers are on the line for both the players and the advertisers. It should be a fun evening.