Super Bowl shows why brands need to be always-on with their advertising
As if there wasn’t already enough drama with Beyoncé actually singing, lots of very expensive ads and speculation about performance enhancing drugs, we were seconds into the second half of the big game (yes it is supposed to be a football match) and the lights go out.
Now a lot of media money had already been spent airing the captivating half-time ads that will be talked about for hours (maybe even days) to come. But here we were, faced with an unexpected situation that saw people take to social media in their droves. (Twitter saw a spike of 34% during the blackout). And what were they doing? They were doing what me and everyone else in my street did when we had a power cut a few weeks ago, stepping outside and sharing the slightly surreal experience with each other, cracking jokes, shrugging shoulders. During the Super Bowl blackout there were all kinds of banter and speculation. Will it affect the rest of the match? Will there even be a rest of the match? Is Beyoncé upset about something?
I’m a true believer in only saying something when it’s worth saying, when you will be listened to and (hopefully) get an acknowledgment back from your friends. Like your very best mate being a bit of a comedian in the pub or you when you landed that quick come-back. It’s interactions like these that shape other people’s perception of you, that make you the legend, that make you good to hang out with and also get you talked about to friends of friends. Enter Oreo, with a tweet that went down an absolute storm: Simple, witty and bang-on time.
We do our fair share of always-on and this new kind of fast, reactive advertising has changed the way we do things at TMW and the way our clients approve things. Without the constraints of media lead-time, an ad can be briefed, designed and posted in minutes. In fact, for many of our clients there is a brief permanently running, looking to react to current (and relevant) affairs and turn them in to witty, timely ads for brands like Lynx and Durex. The main challenge? Making sure that by the time the ad goes live it still resonates with the audience.
And that’s where a cautionary thought comes in, and I use the same analogy as before to explain. If you’ve ever met someone that talks too much shit too often whilst trying to be witty you’ll soon stop listening. A steady stream of always-on is all well and good but it better not be there just for the sake of it. Oreo got it right, in a big Super Bowl, Beyoncé, tickertape kind of way.
Gareth James, Executive Creative Director, TMW