They insult our intelligence, tickle our funny bone, tug on our emotional heartstrings and sometimes, cause us to wonder who gets paid to create such outrageous garbage.

While the debate may never cease over what came first – the chicken or the egg – when it comes to the Super Bowl and commercials – the answer – in my opinion – is one could not survive without the other.

The advertisements are why some viewers watch the Super Bowl, so they can be in the know when discussing the big game and its ads the next day. And there are some people who view commercials as an exuberant and unnecessary expense or the time to quickly get some things done around the house until the game comes back on.

Turning to my friends for some input on their favorite and least favorite ads, one man said he left the room for most ads “trying to get stuff done.” Another man stated he didn’t watch commercials and protests the celebration of commercials. “Running a normal ad on normal media platforms is just fine. But the intersection of big expensive commercials / Big Games is unhealthy on many levels.”

Consider this – a 30-second advertisement during the Super Bowl costs $4.5 million or an average of $150,000 a second. Last year, the price for the same ad was $4 million. Commercials in the first Super Bowl in 1967 cost $42,000.

As a small business owner, what can you learn from the Super Bowl ads? From a quick survey of friends, here’s what we found:

  1. Location, location, location. Just like selling a house, it’s the location that matters most when deciding where to buy. The same hold true for advertising. Whether you decide to advertise your business or product on television, the radio, a magazine, newspaper or the internet, you need to make sure you pick a location that will be seen by your target audience.
  2. How do you want to be remembered? The ad about a child being killed in a home due to an accident caused a bit of an uproar. One friend said the Nationwide Insurance ad made her furious. “If you want to prevent childhood deaths, then be clear about your message… We think a kid drowned in the bathtub, had a TV fall on them, etc… Provide parents with info on how to prevent these things… Don’t just present them. Better- focus on vaccines. Many times accidents are just that- accidents.” What’s often the case, if a consumer doesn’t like your ad, she won’t like your business.
  3. It’s time to grow up – The Fiat fueled by Viagra. Really? Unless 16-year-old boys can afford to purchase a Fiat, you shouldn’t write commercials targeted at them. There are times juvenile humor works and a time it insults. Or causes women to say, “Great. Just another excuse for men to act like boys.”
  4. Don’t like her. Now tuning out. There’s a lot of complicated ideas I can understand. What I can’t and probably never will understand is why Americans have a fascination with Kim Kardashian. Whenever I see her on TV, I have to leave the room so I don’t throw something at the TV. If you want to run an ad about narcissism and what it is and give an example of what it looks like, sure use Kim and her entire family. Truth is, I don’t even remember what she was advertising because I don’t respect a woman who became famous for doing some pretty infamous acts.
  5. Inspire me. People like commercials that make them feel good, inspire them, and make them think. Throw like a girl did a great job of showing how and why it’s important to empower girls to become strong women.
  6. Puppies and horses. Budweiser once again takes home a prize because people like cute puppies and horses. It’s a feel good commercial. Budweiser has also built a strong reputation on using the Clydesdale horses along with cute dogs. When you are creating an advertisement for your business, think about the message you want people to remember. A good ad makes people want to either visit your business or purchase what you are selling.

A few things to consider when creating an ad:

  1. Who is your target audience?
  2. What will motive your target audience to take action?
  3. What’s the best way to capture your target audience’s attention?

Whether you ready to create a 30-second ad for television, a billboard ad or a print ad for a magazine or newspaper, contact Oregon Marketing Group. What we can promise you is we won’t create an ad that will make people wondering what you were thinking, that they will forget or they will hate.

And we promise we won’t ever create an ad staring Kim Kardashian.


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