Way back during Super Bowl XXXIII (1999), advertisers liked to keep their Super Bowl commercials under wraps and then let the buzz happen. Although TMP was then part of Monster, most of us had no idea that the “When I Grow Up” commercial would air and be one of the big winners of the year. When it did, it helped make a digital brand and propel Monster into a top 20 Internet site.
Part of the charm in those days was how unexpected this black-and-white spot was amidst all the repetitive beer commercials and dazzling duels to out do. Yet popping a commercial on game day also entailed risk of not being seen.
Well times have changed, and out-dueling today means out-buzzing. That makes sense: when your spending that much money, you don’t want to be missed when attention wanders during the timeouts in the third quarter. Hence we have had Ferris Bueller revving us up virally for Honda (not much of a teaser when you find out the client, eh?). And then there’s John Stamos in Dannon’s venture into the Super Bowl with Oikos:
The bigger change is that when Monster ventured forth in 1999, the dot coms were just taking over the Super Bowl (and for some it was a short-lived victory). Now television and online are fully intertwined. In an interview with Media Life magazine, Michael Pavone, president and chief executive officer at the Harrisburg, Pa. agency Pavone, which does the post-game commercial rating site SpotBowl, explained how the trend has shifted to pre-game buzz.