I have to admit that I am not a huge football fan for the actual sport of it- I am fan for the social aspects. Getting together with friends, having a few beers, making chili and cheesy, creamy dips- that is what football is all about in my opinion. When my husband and I were dating, he was so excited to go down to my alma mater, UVA, for ACC football games. The day before he proposed he was horrified to realize that I was only at the game to talk with friends and drink 4 or 5 airplane bottles of bourbon in my Diet Coke. It was all about socializing for me- oh wait, was that a first down?

It is no surprise that I have fully embraced the new trend of social media focused advertising around the Super Bowl. It is a frenzy of activity with brands hoping to gain traction and attention in the weeks leading up to the big game. The big brands that can afford a $4 million 30 second spot are looking for boosted brand awareness and a connection with their audience. The logical extension of that 30 seconds is to roll out your campaign via social platforms in the form of commercial “teasers” (my favorite so far), promotions, sweepstakes, and the push for the kind of viral explosion that every brand hopes to get with their most clever advertising initiatives.

Mashable is predicting that 67.4% of viewers will post about ads on social media during the game and 37.6% of viewers will see ads before the game.¬†This year we can actually track how much traction a brand is getting via Marketing Land’s #Hashtag Bowl sponsored by Hootsuite. I am so excited to watch this during the game that I am pretty sure I still won’t know which teams are playing by the third quarter. Seattle and somebody, right? On Super Bowl Sunday they will be tracking the ads and the social media mentions. What will be interesting is to see if any brands fail to include hashtags in their commercials- only 50% did in last year’s Super Bowl commercials. This will be an amazing way to see in realtime what is resonating with audiences and gaining the buzz that every marketer is hoping to achieve.

oreoThis is also an excellent opportunity for brands without the $4 million budget but with a social media presence to rally around a unifying event and engage with their followers and attract new fans. Oreo knocked it out the park during last year’s game when the power went out and a clever marketer tweeted “Power out. No Problem.” with an image of “you can still dunk in the dark.” Brands that are on top of these opportunities during the Super Bowl are sure to come out Champions.


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