Super Bowl ads follow the same old playbook, muff mobile

Advertisers and marketers, did you notice what was missing from this year’s Super Bowl commercials?

Beer ads? No. Mobile phone with view of NFL Mobile

Aliens? No.

Cowboys? No.

Humor? No…well, sometimes.

What was missing from this year’s Super Bowl ads? Mobile.

I was so disappointed. I really thought this would be the year advertisers would integrate mobile. This is the year they should have. (Mobile Marketer and Vibes agree and have stats to show why.)

They had a captive audience at one of the most watched events of the year. AND the viewers LIKE to watch the commercials! What’s that called again? Oh yes, opportunity.

Last year’s Super Bowl was watched by 106 million people. Doritos, Budweiser, Best Buy and all the other brands who spent ungodly sums of money to run their ads could’ve used their allotted time more wisely by using mobile to engage their audience for more than just those 60 seconds.

Think of how many people watch from their local bar. You know, the one they check into on foursquare all the time. Gee, Budweiser, couldn’t you think of anything to do with that?

Off the top of my head—have viewers check in or text from the bar to win a free Bud Light. (Limit the number of winners of course.) Winners could even text back a photo of themselves with that beer. You could post the pictures on your Facebook page or run them on another commercial.

Most disappointing was Motorola’s ad for their new Xoom tablet. If anyone should be the first to integrate mobile well with a Super Bowl ad, it should easily be a mobile technology company. BOOOOOO!!

How hard is it to ask viewers to (at the very least) text “Xoom” for a chance to win your new tablet? Don’t you need all the help you can get to compete with the iPad?

And what about Chevy Camaro? With two minutes to go in the fourth quarter of the game, I thought you were going to save the day.

You run an ad where two guys talk back and forth about different scenarios for several parts of the commercial. What a beautiful setup for viewers to text in their own opinions! The car drives off a parking garage and action freezes.

Camaro ad shot of car driving off roof

I’m sure the announcer is going to say, “What happens next? You decide.” Or something like that. But no. You give the ad an ending yourself. BOOOOOO!

The only one paying attention to mobile users was the NFL. Mobile fans could get news, stats, highlights and more sent to their phone, just by texting in. Of course, the NFL probably could’ve done more with that too—like maybe remember that viewers in a bar or at a party (which is probably most viewers) might not be able to see that small print at the bottom of the screen telling them what to text in.

So, advertisers, marketers and mobile phone users, were you disappointed too?


I know I usually post blog articles on Tuesday, but given that the Super Bowl is the biggest advertising event of the year, this week’s post is early. Hope you enjoyed the game—and the ads!


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