Super Bowl Marketing 101: Ideas, Strategy, Campaigns


Super Bowl marketing often gets as big as the game itself. A lot is at stake for marketers as Super Bowl offers an opportunity to reach an exceptionally large audience base that would otherwise be very tough to reach. Here are some ideas that can boost your Super Bowl marketing strategy.

This year’s Super Bowl will have fewer commercial breaksOpens a new window . This means that the stakes are even higher. With Trump and Bloomberg buying spots for their respective presidential campaigns to Facebook debuting in the Super Bowl adsOpens a new window ; it is more crucial than ever for brands to leverage the popularity of this highly anticipated event.

Here are some insightful Super Bowl marketing facts:

Learn More: Five Social Media Marketing Predictions for 2020Opens a new window

Therefore, an effective Super Bowl marketing strategy is a must in 2020 to broaden the reach of your Super Bowl marketing campaigns.

Super Bowl Marketing Strategy for 2020

Here are our three Super Bowl marketing ideas to drive your Super Bowl Marketing Strategy.

1. Integrated Super Bowl Marketing Campaigns

“The future of Super Bowl Ads doesn’t include TV or Football,” – WiredOpens a new window .

You cannot ignore social media while devising your marketing and content strategy, and this applies to your Super Bowl marketing too.

“Running an ad during the Super Bowl used to be the pinnacle of American marketing prestige, but in an age when Super Bowl viewership is slipping and even avid watchers are splitting their attention between the game and the conversation about the game on social media, appealing to the internet has become more important than crafting a sizzling 30-second TV spot…Even among brands that do run game-time ads, the growing internet grab has steadily stretched that moment out and made it less and less football-centric: It’s now totally normal to see Super Bowl ads on YouTube one or two weeks before (and after) kickoff, which helps defray their cost” says the Wired storyOpens a new window .

In 2020, marketers won’t stop at 30 or 60 seconds creatives for their Super Bowl marketing campaigns. We expect them to implement a more holistic approach that integrates digital and social media marketing campaigns, apart from TV commercials.

The trend is now to pique curiosity with teasers on YouTube well ahead of the campaigns, to start Twitter conversations that drive engagement and action, and to craft ideas that could generate a buzz or go viral (even before or after the main event).

2. Create Mobile Engagement

Adams Knight’s Marketing blogOpens a new window notes, “Thanks to consumers’ propensity for multi-screen viewing, and their desire to engage and interact with others around shared experiences, brands will be omnipresent on small screens during the game—and more agile.”

Mobile gives viewers the much-needed flexibility of any-time, any-where viewing; club that with the ability to entertain and engage in real-time, and you have a winning marketing channel. Plus advertising on digital media like mobile helps you optimize and measure your campaign performance and effectiveness. This helps you tweak your campaign and anticipate and react to viewer preferences in near real-time, unlike television marketing.

Super Bowl viewership declined in 2019 and was the lowest in the past 11 years according to a CNBC reportOpens a new window . But the streaming viewership recorded a 20% increase from the last year.  MediaPost predictsOpens a new window , “As more consumers connect streaming devices to their TV sets, and as mobile viewing options become more plentiful, those streaming figures are expected to rise.”

This means your target audience will be streaming and surfing on mobile devices. Therefore, we expect to see Super Bowl marketing content designed and optimized for mobile consumption.

Example: The HQ (a trivia app) campaign checked both the boxes – social media and mobile strategy to pull away nearly 2 million people from TV screens to their mobiles during their Super Bowl LII marketing campaign.


Screen Grab of HQ Trivia Twitter Handle for their Super Bowl Marketing Campaign LII

According to DigidayOpens a new window , “Two million people tuned into HQ, the real-time trivia app, at halftime after HQ announced it would give away $20,000, the most it’s given away at one time. That means that 2 million people tuned out (or at least had part of their attention aimed at their phones) when Justin Timberlake took the stage for the Pepsi Halftime Show. The audience size dropped to 1 million viewers as Timberlake ended his performance and the Super Bowl went into another commercial break, but by the end of the HQ game, the app still had more than 250,000 viewers.”

Learn More: Top 3 Viral Mobile Marketing Campaign Examples to Inspire YouOpens a new window

3. Take More Women Fans into Consideration

“We want to make sure we’re giving our fans an enriching experience and thinking about the biggest platform there is as an opportunity to bring in teen girl fans…Women currently make up 45 percent of the league’s fan base,” said NFL vice-president of marketing, Johanna Faries, at the second NFL Women’s Summit, as quoted by ReutersOpens a new window .

Example: Well, Olay’s ‘Killer Skin’ Super Bowl marketing campaign of 2019 is a testament that marketers now don’t want to miss out on this huge fan base.

Example of an Olay Killer Skin Ad

According to a CNBC reportOpens a new window , Kate DiCarlo, Senior Communications Leader, Olay, said, “It’s no secret that Super Bowl ads are still predominantly male-centric. We want to lead the charge in making space for women during the Big Game, so it was an easy decision to bring our continuous message of empowerment — one we believe everyone can get behind — back to TV’s biggest event of the year.”

We expect more campaigns with women as the target audience to rule this year’s Super Bowl.

Pro Tip: This year focus on breaking out of stereotypes. Use stats and facts to understand your target audience and craft a relevant message to reach them at the right time.

Learn More: Consumer-Take: Gender Targeting & Stereotyping In Digital AdvertisingOpens a new window

Super Bowl Marketing – Key Takeaways

Super Bowl marketing is more about creating a buzz, driving brand awareness, and recall. This is one ‘spot’ where you would want viewers to take notice of your brand. So, focus on getting your creative ad noticed and talked about rather than driving sales (which eventually will follow).

Here are our top ideas to do that:

  1. Create anticipation through social media.
  2. YouTube video commercials pre- or post-Super Bowl are an excellent way to get the audience talking.
  3. Engage your audience through social conversations.
  4. Create an omnichannel strategy.
  5. Optimize and create content for mobile audiences.
  6. Move beyond stereotypes to resonate with your target audience.
  7. Craft a relevant message to best fit their needs.

What are your special Super Bowl marketing ideas for this year? Tell us on Twitter,Opens a new window LinkedIn, oOpens a new window n FacebookOpens a new window ; we’re always listening!