Super Bowl LIII ad scorecard: The sacks

So far in this year’s Super Bowl Ad Scorecard, we’ve seen which ads came out on top as well as which ads fell mid-tier when it comes to engaging Canadians at the subconscious level of the brain. In this final installment, will look at which ads made like the Rams’ offensive and failed to get anything going.

The Sacks: Attention

Although humorous ads were amongst some of the best this year, not every joke lands with Canadians - especially those that can be perceived as a little more angry or impolite in their tone (T-Mobile and M&M’s). Bud Light’s attempt to take a shot at their competitors didn’t land either and celebrities weren’t enough to carry ads from Toyota, Amazon and M&M’s.

5 ads that failed to break through

T-Mobile x Taco Bell | What’s For Dinner?

Toyota Supra | Wizard

M&M’s | Bad Passengers ft. Christina Applegate

Amazon | Not Everything Makes The Cut

Bud Light | Special Delivery


The Sacks: Connection

Four ads tried to go directly for the heartstrings, either with topics at the centre current of political polarization (Washington Post and Budweiser) or powerful human stories (Verizon and Kia), yet came up wanting - as did T-Mobile’s attempt at humour that played to senior stereotypes.

5 ads that failed to drive consideration

The Washington Post | Democracy Dies In Darkness

Kia Telluride | Give It Everything

Verizon | The Team That Wouldn’t Be Here

Budweiser | Wind Never Felt Better

T-Mobile | Dad?

The Sacks: Encoding

Three beverage companies, including one that tried to leverage ASMR (Michelob ULTRA) and a couple of attempts to leverage celebrities in nostalgic roles - Olay with Sarah Michelle Gellar being chased by a serial killer and The Dude and Carrie Bradshaw breaking tradition in their drink orders for Stella Artois - these ads took a hard hit from the blindside in encoding to memory.

5 ads that were not memorable

Michelob ULTRA | The Pure Experience

Bon & Viv | The Pitch

[ yellow tail ] | Tastes Like Happy

Olay | Killer Skin

Stella Artois | Change Up The Usual


Final Thoughts:

Much like the Super Bowl halftime show, the big game ads are a major reason that people tune in to watch the game every year. But unlike the days of yesteryear, when one could only see the ads if they tuned in live, anyone can access the ads online via YouTube and other sites.

This means that relying on the (increasingly dwindling) reach of the Super Bowl alone is no longer enough. Brands must begin to think about how to craft their messaging for the variety of users who are accessing their messaging across every platform, as well as how the devices/screens that are being used to access the messaging will effect how it lands for the audience.

Want to learn more about how to create the best possible Super Bowl ad, based on years of data coming directly from the brains of consumers? Stay tuned - we’ll have more to follow on the blog shortly. Or, drop us a line - we’d love to hear your thoughts.