Last year’s Super Bowl ad game was on fleek. Between unique promotions like Bud Light’s life-sized Pac-Man game and a number of mobile companies advertising their wares including Supercell’s Clash of Clans brands proved to be clutch just like game MVP Tom Brady. While hopeful NFL franchises are chasing the coveted Lombardi Trophy, advertisers are in “championship or bust” mode too chasing elusive eyeballs and dollars.
For Super Bowl 50 in February, companies will again bring their A-game. With ads both broadcasting on TV and streaming online simultaneously, CBS expects major exposure from its audience, and they’re charging accordingly for commercials. A 30-second ad spot for the big game is going for $5 million a pop and, according to CBS president Les Moonves, spots have almost sold out, indicating that companies aren’t shying away from reaching a record breaking audience. Last year, the game was the most watched show in U.S. TV history.
Though some companies still have yet to be revealed and others like GoDaddy have already bowed out we do have a rough idea of some that will be taking part in the yearly proceedings. Of course, there are some obvious ones that will make a return, like Bud Light and CBS, hawking its own programming. But here are some that might surprise you:
With the Pokemon franchise celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, The Pokemon Company has opted to set up a Super Bowl 50 ad to celebrate it.
While details about the ad haven’t been revealed as of yet (it’s not certain how long it will even be), it is meant to encourage fans to “Train On,” referring to the consistent battles that the Pokemon games are known for.
It’s going to be a big year for the franchise, between special Nintendo 3DS systems being released in February, three classic Pokemon games coming to digital download for 3DS handhelds, and Pokken Tournament, a new fighting game, launching for the Wii U this spring.
Atlanta’s based bank chain will soon be ready to tackle the Super Bowl, as it has announced its intention to air a 30 second ad during the big game.
Instead of going with a fancy approach, the ad will stick with the basics, focusing on consumer encouragement and financial confidence. “We believe that financial stress is a significant social concern, one that merits national attention,” bank Chairman/CEO William H. Rogers Jr. said in a written statement. “We’re investing in this ad because the Super Bowl is a unique and proven forum to launch a national conversation. We want to be the spark that motivates people to take action, and give them tools and access to information to move closer to financial confidence.”
The popular restaurant chain will return to the Super Bowl with another 30-second spot, although it withheld details on what viewers can expect from it. However, it’s been promising its “biggest launch to date” with a number of recent events, so it could easily tie in with it.
“We aren’t revealing details of our spot until the big game, but we will have ways for our fans to engage with us in the weeks leading up to Super Bowl 50, said Chris Brandt, chief concept and brand officer for Taco Bell. “This build up will pay off with one of the most exciting announcements from the Taco Bell brand to date.
It’s been a few years since we’ve seen BMW’s Mini brand make an appearance in the Super Bowl (2011, to be exact), but it’ll come roaring back this year with a new 30-second ad during the third quarter.
The ad will feature various models from the Mini line-up, including the new Clubman wagon, and while no other details have been revealed, it should be just as innovative as the 2011 piece, which featured Katie Couric and Bryant Gumble in a piece titled “Cram It In the Boot”, with a game show-based format.
Once again, the chip brand from Frito-Lay looks to “Crash the Super Bowl” with a trio of consumer-generated ads that have made the finals, and the winner will air during the game.
These ads have been a hit in the past, ranging from a man trying to save a seat on an airline with all kinds of excuses (only to settle for a beautiful woman and her child) to a kid that actually turns his pet pig into a flying rocket.
The three finalists were selected from a pool of over 4,500 submissions across over 25 different countries, and fans will be able to flock to Doritos.com to vote for their favorite before the Super Bowl. The three finalists are below:
TurboTax is no stranger to Super Bowl advertising, and it’s going all out with this year’s game, with seven new 30-second spots airing during the big game.
The focus on the campaign will be “It doesn’t take a genius to do your taxes,” reminding consumers that using TurboTax software is less of a burden when it comes to adding up numbers and submitting forms.
“This year’s campaign is the next step in our multi-year journey to reposition the TurboTax brand and to build meaningful, emotional connections with consumers,” Greg Johnson, senior VP-marketing for Intuit’s Consumer Tax Group, said in a statement.
An example of what TurboTax has in mind with the campaign, featuring professor of theoretical physics Michio Kaku, can be found below.
Instead of relying on a savvy campaign or a superstar to promote its product, will instead have a simple message: “save water.”
The 30 second spot will discuss how millions of gallons of water are wasted every year from people leaving water running while they brush their teeth. It’s a remake of a 60-second ad that originally aired in Latin America last year (see below), one that points out how four gallons of water are wasted daily amongst Americans. It’ll tie in with an #EveryDropCounts social campaign that’s set to kick off during the popular event.
Even though Adidas’ specific Super Bowl plans haven’t been revealed yet, it’s picked up a major star to headline a football-related series that ties in with the big event. Turf’d Up featuring rapper Snoop Dogg discusses the sport with many guests, including ex-NFL players, celebrities and other sports personalities. The episodes will be available on Snoop’s WestFestTV YouTube channel.
“We have a long-standing relationship with Coach Snoop, which includes everything from working with him to design signature footwear, apparel and uniforms, to the sponsoring the SYFL his grassroots football program,” said Mark Daniels, vice president of team sports for Adidas. “Turf’d Up is the natural extension of our partnership and provides the perfect platform to showcase Coach Snoop’s talent, his knowledge of the game and how Adidas Football is the only brand that fuses sports and culture.”
The vehicle company confirmed that it will have a Super Bowl spot to highlight its new Ridgeline pickup, a car that made its debut at the North American International Auto Show this year. The 60-second spot will highlight the performance of the vehicle, as part of a multiplatform campaign leading up to its availability. “Super Bowl 50 is the right time and the right venue to communicate Honda’s continued leadership in light trucks,” said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president and general manager for Honda’s motor division. “The multiplatform approach will enable Ridgeline to come out of the gate strong in 2016.”
The TV manufacturer is already busy prepping for the CES show. However, the company is hard at work on a Super Bowl ad that will highlight its popular OLED TV technology. The ad will be produced by Ridley Scott’s production company, RSA Films, and will be directed by Jake Scott. Expect some cinematic flair when this ad makes its debut.
Each year, “rookie” advertisers try their luck on a Super Bowl ad, like uCool with its mobile game Heroes Charge. For this go-around, Paypal, the online currency handling company, will try its hand with a Super Bowl ad, though it hasn’t divulged details on what fans can expect from its commercial. Other first-timers are likely to join the advertising game as well for the game, but Paypal is easily the most noteworthy thus far.
The popular candy bar is no stranger to great advertising, and for this year’s Super Bowl, it’s already begun hyping its #BolderThanBold campaign. With it, the company will host a special event that will be broadcast on Periscope live during the game, featuring professional sky-diver Carson Schram. It should no doubt have great reception, just like 2014’s Butterfinger Cups ad did.
Wix and Dreamworks
Last year, Wix.com scored a big win with its Super Bowl ad, featuring Brett Favre and other former NFL superstars trying their hand at new business ventures. For this year’s Super Bowl, however, the site-building company has teamed up with Dreamworks to help promote the forthcoming animated film Kung Fu Panda 3. The ad will feature characters Po and Mei Mei attempting to use Wix’s software platform to create websites. This promotion looks like a win-win for both companies, as Wix gains more superstar exposure, and Dreamworks hypes Kung Fu for its release right before the game, on January 29th. The trailer is below.
The car floor mat marketer has had two Super Bowl commercials with a “made in America” theme. It’ll be returning for a third go-around, with a 30-second spot that’s likely to follow a similar set-up.
Squarespace made an impactful debut on the Super Bowl advertising front in 2014, before continuing on with a much more subtle ad for 2015 featuring Jeff Bridges and his custom-made DreamingwithJeff.com website. We’re unsure what the company has planned for next year, but here’s hoping for a return of Jeff, man.
Yes, the popular candy bar will be back for another go-around in the Super Bowl, but it’s going to take a lot to top last year’s, in which Danny “Machete” Trejo and Steve Buscemi appeared in a classic episode of The Brady Bunch.
Considering that Mars is an official NFL sponsor, we should see another Skittles ad come around in time for the Super Bowl. Last year, the company scored big with its “Settle It” ad, featuring a number of strong-armed folks battling for supremacy via arm wrestling. This year, we have a strong feeling it will feature Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch.
Considering that Pepsi is the sponsor of the Super Bowl halftime show (featuring the band Coldplay this year), we should see at least a couple of superstar ads from the soda company, either with Pepsi or Mountain Dew.
The car manufacturer will return to Super Bowl territory once again with a new 60-second ad, though the tone of the ad is not yet known. Expect a new Kia model to be featured in it, at least.
This company hosted a competition for small businesses, one that would offer ad time for a specific one during the Super Bowl. The winner should be featured in its latest 30-second ad.
Look for not one but two commercial from Hyundia this year, making this the seventh straight year it’s participated with the big game.
The soft drink manufacturer’s plans for advertising aren’t yet known, but with its string of popular ads from the previous years, it’s got something big up its sleeve for Super Bowl 50.
Avocados from Mexico
Yes, avocados have become more of a popular snack, thanks to a variety of ads featuring a number of stars hawking them. A new 30-second ad is in the works for Super Bowl 50, and is likely to feature a similar, humorous approach.
Acura hasn’t been in Super Bowl advertising since 2012, but it’s opting to come back full steam with a new spot that highlights one of its upcoming car models for 2016. No word yet on whether Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno, who appeared in the company’s ad a few years ago, will make a return.
More partners are likely to be announced in the weeks ahead, so be sure to check back to see who’s ready to tackle the big game.