2017 Super Bowl Commercials at a Glance

TSM Blog Post 4

Arguably, the only thing on television more highly anticipated than the Super Bowl is the commercials that run during it. For Super Bowl LI, a 30-second spot reportedly meant companies dishing out north of $5 million. Is it worth the investment? Well, the 2015 Super Bowl had a reported 114.4 million viewers, the 2016 Super Bowl had a reported 111.9 million viewers, and while the final numbers are not in quite yet, the 2017 Super Bowl is expected to have had numbers somewhere in the same neighborhood. All of these viewers witnessing firsthand the marketing and brand messaging of these companies.

Numbers suggest that running a Super Bowl ad can significantly bump a company’s bottom line. Studies have shown that companies that run Super Bowl ads see a boost in stock prices, at least for the short term. Also, movies that run release ads during the Super Bowl have been known to produce better results than those that do not. Put simply by Professor Tim Calkins of Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, “If you want to reach a large portion of the U.S. population quickly, there is nothing quite like the Super Bowl.”

Of course, if you are going to spend the money on a Super Bowl ad, why waste it? It is important that the spot does an excellent job representing the brand and product, especially given the time restraints. Because, as we all know, the days following the Super Bowl can be more about critiquing the commercials than critiquing the performance on the field. Lists of “Top Super Bowl Commercials”, “Funniest Super Bowl Commercials”, and for an unfortunate few, “The Worst Super Bowl Commercials”, will inevitably flood the Internet, Social Media, and News outlets.

As for the 2017 Super Bowl, the on-field performance was historic. Unfortunately, in our opinion, the on-air performance of the Super Bowl ads was not. Having said that, there were still a few that caught our eye.

Here are TSM’s top picks for Super Bowl LI ads:

3. Busch

Coming in at number three we have Busch’s “Buschhhhh”. This commercial benefited from being on early in the game when the anticipation level was still high. It succeeded in the “silly” category and for many, may have been the first good chuckle of the game.

Check out "Buschhhhh" 

2. Budweiser

At number two, Budweiser’s “Born the Hard Way”. This commercial was effective because they were able to take the 1-minute spot and really tell a story. Instead of cheap laughs or celebrities, Budweiser decided to tell the story of how Adolphus Busch came over to America and met Eberhard Anheuser, eventually leading to the creation of Budweiser.

Check out "Born the Hard Way"

1. Honda

And finally, TSM’s favorite Super Bowl commercial of 2017, Honda’s “Year Books”. Packed with celebrity and athlete endorsers, with some humor sprinkled in, Honda utilized several household names and showed us a blast from each of their pasts with animated yearbook pictures. Honda did a great job utilizing celebrity endorsers to keep their audience interested and amused.

Check out "Year Books"

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