Advertising Sports and Entertainment

Team Take: This Year’s Winner Of The Super-est Super Spot® Is… (By Kenny)

The Super Bow–…eh, I mean The BIG Game arrives each February, and part of the grand tradition that is Super Bo-(sigh…goddammit) NFL Championship Weekend is the festive gathering of friends, foes, families, and fans each year. It doesn’t matter if your team is in it (although it sure does crank the experience up to 11 if they are) or even if you have a team, really. What matters is the good time with great company. Regardless of what teams are playing or which one ultimately gets to hoist the Lombardi trophy at the end of the contest, the real winners are the fans… brand fans.

The other game that is going on during the S**** B*** is the game for advertising bragging rights. Each year, corporate sponsors roll the dice and gamble BIG money on advertising and marketing during the broadcast. In an age where commercials are usually skipped as soon as the option becomes available or virtually omitted altogether with subscriptions or software, the annual tradition of group consumption and judgment of the way brands choose to advertise has continued on. This is the only time of year that viewers actually look forward to advertisements interrupting the main event and the stakes are never higher for advertisers than they are during that super special Sunday each February.

The expectations are always high, and both the production and talent shoot for the stars, boosted by budgets that stretch even the most liberal accounting departments’ purse strings. Co-workers are just as (if not more) likely to discuss which commercial was the most memorable as they are about what they thought of the halftime performance or the outcome of the game. It’s a phenomenon that has been as big a part of the Super experience as the actual game itself.

So which Super Spot® was the winner this year? For me, it was a spot that came on during the 4th quarter, that directly followed a dramatic game-tying touchdown with only a few minutes remaining in the game. High drama and world-class athleticism were on full display and the crowd whipped into an uncontrollable frenzy. What could be done to calm the coming storm of the finale? It would need to have that special combination of quality production, a surprise cameo, and a roller coaster of emotions to take me away from the drama of the game itself.

This is the classic recipe for a great Super Spot®. This is the way.

The “Buschhhhhhhhhhhhh” can pop and mountain man character aren’t new concepts for A-B InBev’s 5th most popular beer in its stable, but they certainly let their ad team take it to the next level with this entry. Kicking off a campaign based on The Busch Guide, they chose Canadian legend Sarah Mclaughlin as their comedic twist — using her 1997 hit “Angel” to misinterpret the Busch Guy’s declaration about food, drink, and “shelter” (queue the music), and encourage us (once again) to send “just dollars a day” to pluck our heartstrings and coax us into helping our local animal shelters.

It was a fun spot on a night full of good efforts, and this year’s winner of the Super-est of Super Spots® award from yours truly. I think I’ll go see if I can help get Buschhhhhhhhhhhhh Lite past their sibling “Natty” Light in the A-B InBev hierarchy. Can’t wait to watch the commercials next February. Actually, I’m pretty sure I can.