I’ve given it a lot of thought, and I have come to the conclusion that I cannot write about anything besides the Super Bowl this week. I feel this way partly because I am a die-hard Patriots fan, and partly because Super Bowl XLIV was the most watched show in television history. I, along with millions of other Americans, had my eyes glued to the TV for hours. Some viewers watched the program for the ads, some watched for the game, and viewers like me enjoyed watching both. Although much of America’s focus on Sunday night was on the television, the internet showed no signs of slowing down.
While I am proud that I focused on the game and only tweeted a scant number of times during the pre-game, post-game, halftime performance, and a few select commercials, I wasn’t the norm. According to Salesforce, there were 13.9 million tweets relating to the Super Bowl. Naturally, this is something that many companies are bound to take advantage of.
Brands are beginning to realize that pairing a social media presence with their Super Bowl Ad presence can produce huge results. By using multiple channels, brands increase the likelihood of being noticed. One way to get noticed is by Real-Time Marketing, an inbound marketing technique that companies use to create custom content based on a specific time and place. This year, 31 companies used the technique on Twitter. That’s a steady climb from last year’s 26 and a massive leap from 2013’s 8 early adopters.
P&G was this year’s star. In her article for Tech Crunch, Sarah Perez writes that “the ad was designed for social media buzz.” And she’s right. P&G’s decision to title the “#LikeAGirl ad with a # in it was definitely not an afterthought. #LikeAGirl sparked up a lot of emotions from viewers. It’s no secret that Twitter users like to share their feelings on just about anything–they don’t need a reason to speak out. Give them a hashtag? They’ll go nuts. And that’s just what they did. There were over 400,000 mentions of the spot during the Super Bowl. I think it’s safe to say that this number will only continue to grow since the topic of empowering young girls is not one that will go out of style any time soon.
P&G was a social media MVP, but there’s still a lot of room for other brands to move in on the action. According to Chute’s research, the top five content creators under #halftime on Instagram were made up of fan accounts and internet celebrities. Greetings, marketers! This is a place where you should focus in on. I’ll be the first to admit that creating engaging content is not the easiest task, but a little added effort in this area might lead to huge gains.
There isn’t much evidence on how the online buzz has translated into product sales or customer acquisition yet, but I think it’s safe to say that pairing social media efforts with Super Bowl campaigns doesn’t hurt. It will be interesting to see in the coming months what the full impact is.