Super Bowl Advertising

Absorbing all the television commercials in between football action on the field can be as much fun on Super Bowl Sunday as the actual game itself, at least for trademark and marketing types, especially when your favorite team isn’t even on the field.

One of my personal favorites from this past weekend’s Super

So, tomorrow is the big day, the big game, or whatever else other intimidated advertisers might call it. I just want to find the best deal on a flat screen television today!

But, more to Mike Masnick’s point on Techdirt about the NFL’s reputation as a “trademark bully,” and his challenge to

—David Mitchel, Norton Mitchel Marketing

Coca-Cola is celebrating its 125th birthday this month. A 125 year history as a brand is quite remarkable. Very few brands last that long. In its 125 history, Coca-Cola has become an iconic brand globally.

Coca-Cola is a great case in showing the importance of the various elements of

—David Mitchel, Chief Marketing Officer at Norton Mitchel Marketing

It has been about a week since Super Bowl Sunday. Super Bowl ads are always a big story. This year was no exception. FOX charged brands nearly $3 million per 30 seconds of ad space. Without further ado, here are the 5 most relevant questions about Super Bowl advertising this year.

1. Can buzz from a Super Bowl ad build sales?

Volkswagen would like to believe so, after building a lot of buzz from the ad entitled “The Force”. In the ad, a young boy dressed as Darth Vader tries to use the force to create magical outcomes. He fails to do so, but goes outside to greet his dad who drives up in the all new 2012 Volkswagen Passat. The boy stands in front of the car and it starts, from the remote control that the father uses inside the house. The boy is impressed with his power, and the father is impressed with the car’s remote start feature.

The ad got a lot of people to talk and was generally well liked. However, the kid and the Darth Vader costume were the stars of the commercial, not the Volkswagen Passat. This ad reminds of the Terry Tate Office Linebacker ad from Reebok in the early 2000s. It built a lot of buzz but didn’t generate incremental sales. The failure of the Terry Tate ad campaign did cause an MBA level professor to write a marketing case study though.

The new Passat isn’t scheduled to hit the market until later this year, and the buzz from the commercial will have simmered by then. Of course, it probably won’t matter much because like the Terry Tate ads, the commercials didn’t connect meaningfully to the product advertised, nor did the commercial advertise a particularly unique feature.


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With more than a little help from Betty White and Abe Vigoda, Mars topped USA Today’s AdMeter for 2010 Super Bowl television advertisements.

For anyone out there who thought Abe Vigoda had passed on, and Mars’ ad was just another technological resurrection of a dead actor to sell products, like me, you’re operating on old