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Monday, Feb. 11, 2008

Screencast: How the Super Bowl Ads FUMBLED Online

By Anthony Garcia
February 11th, 2008

no stain. no gain.This year’s Super Bowl ads once again found us scratching our heads. If you’re going to spend $2.7 million for 30 seconds of air time in order to send people to a website, why not sell them your product once they get there?

In this screencast, we’re going to show you how two brands — Tide to Go and Under Armour — continue to miss out on converting browsers into buyers, even after the post-game traffic surge is over. Depending on who you ask, these sponsors’ ads (“Interview” for Tide and “The New Prototype” for Under Armour) were pretty decent. The products don’t seem to be the problem, either.

Nope. What we have here is a failure to convert. So, much like the New England Patriots are doing right now, let’s see what we can learn from some video analysis:

Let’s take a look at some post-game stats from Reprise Media’s Search Marketing Scorecard:

  • 6% of companies included a call to action, asking viewers to visit their websites–a decrease of nearly two thirds from last year
  • 93% did not buy search placement for concepts relating to their ads, including spokesperson names, slogans and taglines. Among the brands that failed to buy featured stars’ names as keywords were Bridgestone Tires (Alice Cooper and Richard Simmons) and Sunsilk (Marilyn Monroe, Shakira and Madonna). Unfortunately, notes Reprise, given that the celebrities are often the only thing that viewers remember about an ad.
  • 74% still neglected to include a call to action on their Web site landing pages, leaving users “directionless.”

These figures are important because they illustrate a common misconception among multi-channel marketing campaigns: While the TV ad’s success can be measured by the traffic it drives to the website, the traffic alone is meaningless. When visitors can’t convert, you lose.

Want help converting online? Download “10 Tips to Start Optimizing Your Site” for free!

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Comments (8)

  1. This is an information that is obviously of great value. I totally
    agree with your statements.Thanks for sharing it!

  2. I agree with your thoughts on the Tide to Go site not offering enough to a consumer to incentivize purchasing the product. I think there should have been a printable coupon, etc. However, I wanted to know your thoughts on this–realistically who is going to purchase that product online? I sure wouldn’t…I would add it to the grocery list and pick it up at Wal-Mart or a drugstore if I was interested in the product. It is hard to say this type of marketing doesn’t convert, just by basing it on online sales. I would think the fact that a consumer would pay about as much in shipping as the actual product costs would deter them from converting online. I think this campaign was designed for brand building. Just my two cents! Thanks for the post!

  3. [...] sur leurs publicités, ce qui est faible). Quelques chiffres de analysés par GrokdotCom [...]

  4. I agree with Crystal post #2…In my opinion I see most Superbowl ads as brand-building ads rather than sales advertisements. Once consumers have a favorable opinion of a particular brand, they are more likely to purchase it when they see it in stores during shopping excursions. How many people would actually buy a tide stick online from as opposed to during a shopping run at the local drugstore?

  5. Crystal,

    I can certainly agree that branding was likely the goal of the Tide Superbowl ad, still that doesn’t mean that you should not take advantage of opportunities to convert for those ready to buy today. That is why a coupon of some kind would have been great, they could have measured the number of coupon downloads and tracked the coupon usage and even possibly justified the ad expense. Like Ron mentioned it was likely never the goal to sell sticks online, but they at least had the foresight to ‘offer’ that option, why not offer a measurable option for those that buy these sticks at the grocery store? Ultimately they missed a huge opportunity, huge.

  6. One notable issue was that I watched all the ads, but could not remember a single URL or have any interest in visiting a website related to any of them. I think advertisers are missing the idea that I’m watching the Super Bowl with friends, not sitting with a pad and paper ready to write down websites I might want to visit later. The game is my #1 priority, not the ads. They would have to present a serious head-turning offer or unveil something new and amazing to persuade me to keep track of a website for later.

  7. [...] how Super Bowl advertisers just didn’t quite carry it across the goal line. The folks at Future Now agree that there were some fumbles. According to them, This year’s Super Bowl ads once again [...]

  8. I would agree. It doesn’t harm you to include call to action of some kind in ad or landing page. There might be a small % of people who might even remember your web address (if it is easy to remember) and go there later.

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