The advertisements that run during the Super Bowl are almost as anticipated as the sporting showdown happening around them, and advertisers never fail to deliver.
Nailing a Super Bowl ad can be an immense boon for a brand, while airing something controversial can lead to widespread backlash. Getting it right is an art form, and failure comes at a cost.
The price of running a 30-second ad during one of the biggest sporting events of the year is around $US5 ($AUD6.5) million, which has risen from $US4.8 million in 2016. Despite the whopping cost, Forbes reports these ads are still considered to be good value thanks to the Super Bowl’s high viewership, with advertisers paying approximately four to five cents per viewer.
With the New England Patriots taking home the trophy after yesterday’s game, here are five ads that got people talking:
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Bud Light resurrects 80s mascot
During the late 1980s, American beer company Bud Light had a wildly popular mascot dog named Spuds MacKenzie. Spuds was a Bull Terrier from Indiana, who Bud Light used in an array of advertising including a Super Bowl ad in 1987.
Despite Spuds’ success, the mascot sparked controversy in the US after a senator and number of community groups believed Bud Light was using the mascot to promote underage drinking. Bud Light denied these rumours but retired the mascot in 1989.
However, Spuds has been literally brought back from the dead, shown in this year’s Super Bowl advertisement as a ghost haunting a man in an homage to Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.
Yellowtail asks to “pet my roo”
In a rare display of Australian brands getting on board with Super Bowl advertising, Yenda-based winery Yellowtail has come out which some have criticised as “humiliating” Australia.
The ad shows a man in a yellow suit, imaginatively dubbed the Yellow Tail Guy, narrating a number of scenes featuring an animated kangaroo. He then runs into Australian model Ellie Gonsalves, and invites her to “pet my roo”.
The ad has already been widely criticised on Twitter, with one person tweeting “I’m not drinking Yellow Tail based on that commercial alone”.
The Yellowtail Super Bowl ad humiliated my country more than Trump ever could.
— Steve Hind (@stevehind) February 6, 2017
It’s been a rough week for Australia but surely that Yellow Tail #SuperBowl Ad with the DJing kangaroo was the low point.
— Josephine Tovey (@Jo_Tovey) February 6, 2017
Mr Clean makes housework sexy
Household cleaning product brand Mr Clean has captured Super Bowl audiences with a sultry soundtrack and a pair of tight white pants in an attempt to use sex to sell cleaning products.
A woman is shown lamenting over a stain in the kitchen, when suddenly the Mr Clean mascot (Mr Clean himself) appears, dancing around the house cleaning various surfaces. Finally, the woman realises the sensual animated mascot is in fact her husband, and the ad finishes with the tagline “you gotta love a man who cleans”.
The ad was immediately well received on Twitter, with users revelling in the strange depiction of sexualised cleaning products.
cant wait to see mr clean in the next magic mike movie
— EJ Gomez (@EJGomez) February 6, 2017
STOP SEXUALIZING MR. CLEAN!
— TKbreezy: Season 3 (@TKbreezy) February 6, 2017
The brand’s own Twitter account was also active during the game, calling out other advertisers.
— Mr. Clean (@RealMrClean) February 6, 2017
KFC airs first ever Super Bowl ad
For a brand as ubiquitous as KFC, it’s hard to believe the company had never aired a Super Bowl commercial until this year.
Deciding on a shorter (and cheaper) 15-second spot, KFC plated the Colonel in gold to advertise its latest offering of Georgia Gold chicken.
Audi promotes diversity and equality
Audi’s Super Bowl ad has received overwhelming praise from viewers worldwide thanks to its message promoting gender equality.
Many have come out in support of the advertisement on Twitter, labelling it a “moving message”.
— Adweek (@Adweek) February 6, 2017
Aaaah this Audi USA commercial on equal pay is every single freaking excellent thing in the world.
— Aisha Tyler (@aishatyler) February 6, 2017
Watch the inspiring advertisement below.