Super Bowl 2023 Ad Recap

As expected from the ads last night, celebrities and humor continued to play a big part in the content of ads with a long list of actors, musicians and athletes, often multiple celebs in an ad. There were several instances of co-branding this year: GM partnering with Netflix, Michelob Ultra partnering with Instacart and Netflix, Coors teaming up with Draftkings. The trend of humor continued and a few played on nostalgia with nods toward Caddyshack (Michelob’s spot) Grease ( T-Mobile) and Clueless (Alicia Silverstone for Rakuten who looked exactly the same all these years later!)

Digital integration continues to grow as advertisers want to get the most out of the high ticket cost. Social media and on air campaigns start weeks before the game with teasers ads and even the actual ads running in feeds and on air. People are multi screen these days, watching on the big screen and engaging on their small screens, TV reaches the mass audience, but social media creates the buzz and marketers want to be part of the conversations before, during and after the game.

What were the best? It is impossible to find a consensus on what was the best ad of the Superbowl; nearly everyone has their own opinion and the industry has been reviewing them for weeks now leading up to the game. USA Today has been ranking Superbowl ads for 35 years with its live poll called the ad meter and has released this year’s rankings. Interestingly, the top 3 did not feature celebrities.

According to the poll, #1 is from Farmer’s Dog, a relatively unknown boutique dog food company. Their ad highlighted emotion with a dog, the young owner and their journey. Farmer’s Dog just elevated themselves at the National level without high paid celebrities in their spot and no gimmicky theme.

#2 was the NFL Run With It ad, highlighting women’s flag football and featuring its star Diana Flores trying not to get her flags pulled off

#3 Amazon’s Saving Sawyer spot, told the story of an adopted dog who needed a friend, delivered with the help of Amazon using emotion and not humor or celebrities.

Celebrity spots did make the cut in the #4 ranked Dunkin Donuts spot featuring Ben Affleck and J Lo, and the #5 Pop Corners ad with Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul.

The Drum is reporting marketers and industry exec’s don’t have a runaway favorite this year and gave kudos to the Tubi spot that made it appear the Tubi app was interrupting the game.

Although many of the spots debuted before last night’s game on air and on social media, there is a You Tube channel hosting all the spots to track views as people come back to rewatch. Some used a strategy to continue their messages beyond TV and onto social media. Universal Studios launched the trailer for Fast X, from the Fast and Furious franchise, then drove viewers on line to see the extended cut resulting in views already in the millions. Kia had 3 alternative endings to its spot posted on the brand’s Tik Tok channel.

In case you missed any, view here on the YouTube adblitz channel:

Written by Account Director, Julie Block Padden

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