For me, the third quarter ads were a hit-and-miss bunch this year. Coming off the Springsteen half time show, I was in a great mood and my wager (for entertainment purposes only) was still in play, so maybe that was why the “Heroes” spot featuring NFL stars played so well in my mind, even though I gave up on the show last season and I hate John Elway. In spite of some ham-handed CGI, I thought the spot was clever and fun.
But my mood was quickly squashed by a parade of mediocre ads from Toyota and Priceline, which felt like rehashes of current campaigns, and Overstock.com who used Carlos Boozer to shill for their site. Note to advertisers: if at some point, you feel like you have to put your “celebrity” spokesman’s full name up on the screen so everyone who doesn’t live in Utah knows who it is, maybe you should rethink your selection. While Carlos seemed charming enough, they should really have sprung for a pitch man with a Q rating higher than mine.
And I’m just going to say it… I don’t understand why everyone always gushes over the Budweiser Clydesdale ads. (All 3 ranked in the top 15 on the USAToday rankings.) I thought they were less than clever and suffered form some really bad CGI in spots. This is the Super Bowl. At this level, (and with these budgets) there are no excuses for “sore thumb” visual effects.
For me, the highlight of the third quarter lineup was the “Hate Work” spot for Careerbuilder. It was funny, it demanded your attention, and best of all, it made sense, which was a rare commodity this year. While it didn’t score well on the USAToday ad meter, it was popular with viewers on their site. And for the record, I DO work next to that guy.
Now let’s check in with our resident boy-genius “The Bouv” for a 4th Quarter wrap-up.
While marketers and brands everywhere are wondering how to connect with customers and clients during a pandemic, one thing is abundantly clear: people are watching