Once again, our favourite time of year is back - the Super Bowl ad season! Every year, we test the key ads from the Super Bowl in the USA and analyse them to see what we can learn. Here are some of the insights from this year!
The 2023 Super Bowl ranked as the second most watched game of all time behind the 2015 game, with over 113 million people tuning in according to Nielsen. Brands paid a whopping $7m for 30-second slots, a number that has been steadily increasing over the years. And keep in mind around a third of brands choose to air 60s ads – costing an eye-watering $14m!!
While the changing economic conditions kept some Super Bowl regular advertisers like P+G, Hyundai, Audi and Toyota, this was also a year filled with lots of beer ads now that Budweiser’s owner AB InBev has given up its exclusive rights after 33 years! We even had a new sponsor for the half-time entertainment with Pepsi passing on that honour to Apple Music.
Of course, it wouldn’t be Super Bowl without celebrities. And this year was no exception. There were celebrities in around 60% of the brand ads. Ans quite a few of the ads had multiple celebrities – imagine those casting budgets!
But the tone of the ads this year was quite different. Mindful of concerns around the costs of living and declining consumer sentiment, brands this year chose upbeat ads that tickled the funny bone and left consumers feeling positive. There were very few emotive ads that ‘tug at the heart strings’ or that championed brand purpose.
With all that being said, here are some of the standouts from our study using our add+impact® ad intelligence tool, which measures ad attention, bonding, brand impact and message take-out to figure out what works and what doesn’t, and to guide advertising strategies.
Dunkin Donuts’ relatable, down-to-earth Drive Thru ad was highly effective whilst also being made on a low budget. Viewers loved seeing Ben Affleck (who is often photographed by paparazzi with Dunkin Donuts products) and felt he was a great fit for the brand. The ad left people wanting to buy some Dunkin Donuts.
While this year we saw less nostalgic music being used one of TMobile’s ads attracted lots of Attention with the remastered version of Grease’s ‘Tell Me More’. The performance by John Travolta and Scrubs’ Zach Braff and Donald Faison was funny, relevant and also conveyed a message.
The Jeep ad is a great reminder of the power of humour and let’s not forget animals! Their dance routines were engaging and the simplicity of the message resonated. This ad is one of the most effective and also one of the only ads without celebrity casting.
And last but not least is the Google Pixel 1:30min long ad! Supported by yet another star-studded casting (Amy Schumer, Doja Cat and Giannis Antetokounmpo), it has a fun tone, is likeable and tells viewers something new and motivating about the new phone.
Have we whet your appetite? We have so many more ads + insights we could share……. so, if you would like more detail from this year’s Luma Super Bowl study, we have a full insights deck. Please reach out to the Luma team.
Nielsen 2023, “Super Bowl LVII totals more than 113 million viewers, ranks second most-watched game ever”
Statista 2023, “Average cost of a 30-second Super Bowl TV commercial in the United States from 2002 to 2023”
Christian Petersen / Getty Images for the cover image