Top 3 Super Bowl Takeaways for Internet Marketers

1. Social media rewards the opportunistic.

The Oreo Super Bowl ad was pretty bad. The “cream vs. cookie” campaign has had its moments, but taking it from sibling rivalry to raging violence seems to run counter to the image Oreo wants as “America’s favorite cookie.”

I guess it was supposed to be funny that the fights took place in a library and everyone was whispering. But that joke got very old very quickly. Instead, it was just another example of the extremes advertisers go to when they run out of good ideas.

But Oreo saved itself by jumping on Twitter when the power went out at the Superdome. Beginning with the “You Can Still Dunk in the Dark” tweet, it rode a wave real-time consumer engagement and post-event PR that no amount of paid advertising can match.

Others followed suit, and many of them appear in write-ups about the Twitter response to the power outage, but it’s Oreo that leads the story and Oreo that gets the spotlight.

2. More people used social media during the game.

Sandvine reports that Internet usage dropped about 15% once the game began, but the drop last year was about 20%. Clearly, more “second screens” are being used, and more of those screens are connected to a social platform.

In fact, social media comments increased 150% over last year. According Bluefin Labs, that’s an all-time record. It means that the Super Bowl accounted for 30.6 million social media comments, nearly 30% more than 23.8 milllion comments during election night 2012.

Of those millions of comments, Twitter accounted for 27.7 million comments, followed by public Facebook comments with a meager 2.8 million.

3. Web sites still the preferred means of online integration with TV commercials, but Twitter gaining significant ground.

Altimeter analyzed this year’s Super Bowl ads and found that three-quarters used some sort of link or hook to online media. The leader was URLs to Web sites, with links appearing in 45% of all ads. But Twitter hashtags were used in 35% of the ads, and while that’s significantly fewer than URLs, use of hashtags increased 31% while use of URLs dropped 8%.

And Facebook integration? As with social comments during the game, Facebook links in ads are becoming a non-factor. They were used in just 7% of the ads, a 4% drop from last year.

About Lee Stral

Lee is a marketing consultant who has specialized in Internet marketing and Web site development since the Internet first showed promise as a marketing channel. Prior to founding Essential Presence, he was partner in an integrated marketing communications agency working with technology, professional service and non-profit organizations.