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Get In The Game: How Digital Is Creating New Opportunities For Super Bowl Advertisers
Columnist James Green notes that the growth of digital media has given brands the perfect opportunity to capitalize on the Super Bowl -- without spending the big bucks on TV.
The Super Bowl is one of the largest televised events of the year, making it a quintessential vehicle for advertisers.
Last year’s Super Bowl telecast of the Seattle Seahawks’ victory over the Denver Broncos set the record as the most-watched television event in U.S. history. Super Bowl XLVIII also set the record for the most-viewed online live stream of a sports event in the U.S.
Advertising costs during the big game surpassed $4 million for a 30-second TV spot as of 2013, and while TV ads are almost as notable as the actual football game, many advertisers no longer feel the need to fork over millions of dollars to capitalize on the big event.
The digital ecosystem has created a prime pre-game platform, allowing brands of all sizes and ad budgets to turn a seasonal event like the Super Bowl into a targeted awareness opportunity aimed at driving sales and influencing purchases.
Look Beyond Sunday
Google findings from last year noted that prior to the game, consumers had more than 70 Super Bowl-related spots to view on YouTube and watched teasers more than 77 million times, which was up from 26 million on the same day the previous year.
Google went on to say that 2013 Super Bowl ads that were released on YouTube before they aired on TV drove approximately 3.4 times more views on average than commercials that were released on game day.
This wouldn’t be possible without the rapid growth of digital media, and it makes sense that more and more advertisers are releasing their spots before the game, in order to drum up excitement and awareness. Overall, this is a great tactic to capitalize on the buzz leading up to the game.
When the game is over, marketers should put their post-game plans into action, making sure that their ads had an impact on sales and brand awareness.
Adobe Digital Index research suggests that with more social pregame activity, advertisers’ websites will see an uptick in traffic earlier, and post-campaign activity could sustain that traffic surge longer.
In order to capitalize on this, brands should utilize search and site retargeting strategies, as well as email marketing and social marketing efforts to engage with new audiences.
Drive Consumers Down The Funnel
Super Bowl Sunday is the second largest party day in the US after New Year’s Eve, making it a prime event for advertisers selling small and large ticket items, from beer and food to financial services and cars.
Advertisers can leverage intent data to reach consumers before the big game, optimizing marketing efforts to consumers that are planning and buying for their Super Bowl parties. This can be done across devices and by leveraging dynamic creative to promote deals and coupons for local stores such as online food delivery or shopping markets.
If you are not selling products directly related to the big game, finding a way to tie your product in is the obvious solution. You know you have a captive market during the Super Bowl, and amplifying your presence across channels like TV to digital will allow you to push consumers down the funnel, driving them to search for your products and visit your website.
Marketers should know, at the very least, the increased traffic will increase advertising avails, keeping CPMs low as you influence your consumers based on intent data.
The instant lift in search activity for products that debut during the event and/or online allow for marketers to be armed and ready to utilize various ad targeting options to capitalize on the large media investments and corresponding consumer interest.
Although the Super Bowl might not be the primary platform for driving sales, the amount of available data produced by this large consumer event will certainly assist in driving audiences deeper into the consumer funnel.
Maximize Awareness With Digital
According to the Adobe Digital Index, over 50% of viewers had a smartphone in their hand at some point during the game last year, and one in three of them used their phones to share on social media. The research also suggested that advertisers would see a jump in mobile traffic — about 60% more than a typical day.
From ad content that is available online during the show (think of the Victoria Secret online half time show a few years back) to content created specifically for social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, the possibilities for awareness via digital are endless.
With that said, no ad that runs during the Super Bowl should be expected to stand alone. Rather, it will (or should) be part of a larger effort to drive awareness to your brand and leverage purchase intent.
We are going to see an increase in digital marketing efforts leading up to, during, and after the Super Bowl this year.
With the rapid growth of digital advertising industry and retargeting strategies that have the ability reach people across devices and platforms, brands don’t necessarily need that $4 million TV spot to reach their audience and gain awareness. Better yet, they need a pre-, during, and post-game plan for capitalizing on the Super Bowl momentum.
Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. Staff authors are listed here.