Whether you’ve called in “sick” today or are toughing it out at your desk right now like a trooper, you’ve probably scrolled through your Twitter feed to find much talk about last night’s big game. And while we’ve been working hard on our full Super Bowl advertisement recap that will launch later this week, I couldn’t let the day go by without highlighting some social media activity by advertisers that caught my attention. Some for their down-right hilarious antics (looking at you Wendy’s), and others for their bold choices, these brands have found creative ways to extend their $5 million+ investment beyond their air-time.

Crazy creative or just plain crazy?
As we shared last week, Skittles had us scratching our heads when they announced they would be showing their multi-million dollar Super Bowl commercial to one person – that lucky person being a teenager named Marcos from Los Angeles. The candy brand released four online teasers leading up to the game, which starred actor David Schwimmer, and heavily advertised the campaign all over social media. They even created a Twitter handle for Marcos Menendez, where the 17-year-old basked about being featured on Good Morning America and counted down until the big reveal. When it came time for Marcos to see the ad, Skittles took to Facebook live to stream his reaction to the commercial and took questions from their audience in real-time. Unfortunately, everyone but Marcos will have to use their imagination and his explanation to picture the commercial, since Skittles is still holding out on letting anyone see the ad. Crazy, right? They think so too. Skittles has been very transparent about how ludicrous it is to spend that much money on an ad and then opt to not show it to their audience – but that’s also why it works. This weird and expensive experiment has drummed up a good amount of talk on social media for them, and while it’s yet to be determined if it was worth the cash, it has set them apart from other advertisers.


Beef over Beef
Filled with witty jokes and hilarious interactions with their followers, Wendy’s has one of the most popular social media voices on Twitter. They used the same humor in their Super Bowl ad where they blatantly called out competitor McDonald’s for using frozen beef – something Wendy’s is against. And as if calling them out in front of 100 million+ viewers wasn’t enough, Wendy’s continued to mock McDonald’s on Twitter warning them that “If you’re frozen, you’re gonna get burned.” They also created their own #FreshTweets hashtag, urging their followers to tweet things they would rather have “fresh” – from laundry to beef – for a chance to be featured on their Fresh Leaderboard. And speaking from experience, there’s nothing more satisfying for a millennial than being retweeted by one of your favorite brands (#goals).

 

Changing the tide for Tide
A top contender for the best Super Bowl ad was Tide’s consistently hilarious commercials. Starring actor David Harbour from the popular show Stranger Things, each ad borrowed themes from other popular commercials to psych the audience out, only to reveal towards the end that it was another Tide ad. The creative campaign kept everyone wondering if every commercial was another fake out from Tide, which kept Tide on the mind of all viewers, and even distracted us all from the recent controversial Tide Pod challenge. Keeping mum on the controversy, Tide extended their commercials to their social media channels by posting funny GIFs throughout the game. David Harbour got in on the fun on Twitter by posting a GIF of himself questioning “Is every ad a #TideAd?” Participants also included Mr. Clean, Isaiah Mustafa (the Old Spice guy), and even Betty White, who poked fun at their appearances in the ads. By all means their ads were a success, and their use of social media has changed the online conversation surrounding their brand for the better.

 

Satisfying the demand for Clydesdales
Beer, food, and Clydesdales – that’s the type of Super Bowl we’ve been accustomed to. So it was no shock when Americans were highly disappointed that Budweiser opted out of showcasing their beloved Clydesdales, even if it was for a greater message. But the beer brand attempted to satisfy their audiences need for tradition by airing a 5-second teaser during the second quarter showcasing their Clydesdale cam. The Clydesdale cam was a live stream from Budweiser’s stables in St. Louis that showed the horses snacking on treats, roaming around the branded room, and just being plain adorable (you’re a monster if you can watch the video without saying “awwww”). It was a smart move for Budweiser to utilize the fan-favorite mascots to draw viewers over to their social handles, where they not only showcased their horses but further promoted their Super Bowl ad.

 
We’re just getting started on the Super Bowl discussion and there are more insights and trends to share. Be on the look out for our full recap of this year’s advertisements!