From Our TV to Our Smartphones

Over the last 50 years, the National Football League has seen many changes – both on and off screen. It all started in 1964 with an emphasis on television, air times and a $28.2 million contract with CBS. From there came the Super Bowl in 1966, which soon became America’s most watched and publicized sporting event of the year.

An impressive 171 to 184 million people are expected to tune in to watch the game this year, compared to the 110 million in 2014. And American’s aren’t the only ones watching. The NFL is now a fast-growing global business, with this year’s Super Bowl being broadcast or streamed in a whopping 230 countries worldwide.

So, if you are anything like John Oliver you may be asking, “What gives? Why are we so obsessed with the Super Bowl?”

My answer is simple- well, pretty simple. Our obsession does not come from the singular event (a football game can’t possibly be that interesting) but rather, the sensationalizing, the publicity and the in-your-face advertising leading up to and during the game. And the implications of this are far reaching.

Gone are the days when a 45-second TV spot got a brand attention. Today’s audience is not only bigger but more critical and more tuned-in than ever before. Viewers will be tuning in to watch the championship game on their smartphones, computers, tablets and gaming consoles. But that’s not all, while watching the game millions of people will be simultaneously monitoring the cultural conversation and trends via social media.

As a result, a completely new mode of marketing has developed where no devise, interweb or communication medium can be left untouched.

Here are three examples of brands that are harnessing a fully-digital marketing campaign:

1. Doritos’- Crash the Super Bowl

Doritos takes user-generated content to a whole new level with its “Crash the Super Bowl” campaign, where the public votes on the ads they think should appear in the Super Bowl TV spots. It’s genius. They capitalized on the fact that part of what people love so much about the Super Bowl is the ads. This all-inclusive digital campaign utilizes two 30-second TV spots, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

doritos twitter screen shot

2.’s #itsThatEasy

This first-time Super Bowl advertiser certainly doesn’t seem like a newbie.  They produced a series of videos that featured various former NFL players to reiterate how easy it is to create your own website – using their platform, of course. And they went a step further by using a hashtag as the title of their ad … #thatsthateasy.

3. DiGiorno’s “PreGiorno”

A type of marketing that was born from the Super Bowl known as live-marketing or real-time social marketing is what DiGiorno has made its main focus.  The brand is utilizing video, online and mobile coupons and hashtags to promote their pre-game awareness. Digiorno has proven that utilizing various forms of digital content, messages and offers can relate to returnable consumer action both online and offline.


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