Teaching PR On-Line for Northwestern State University

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Super Bowl Advertisers Did Best When They Used PR

This is from www.bulldogreporter.com

Post-Game Good News for PR: Proof That Media Outreach Helps Brands Super-Size Super Bowl Ad Dollars

Super Bowl advertisers who maximized investments did so by leveraging PR to drive media coverage

by Gary Getto, Vice President, VMS

The winners of Super Bowl XXXIX were the marketers who knew how to leverage their advertising investment. Advertisers like Ford, Pepsi, and Budweiser generated incremental consumer reach with news coverage that equaled or exceeded the value of their Super Bowl ad cost.

On the day after this year’s Big Game, it’s looking like this year’s Super Bowl advertisers are likely to rack up even more impressive figures.

Once upon a time, advertisers were looking for ways to simply reach consumers. But reach is no longer enough. Smart marketers are searching for better ways to engage customers, break through the clutter and generate impact. They’re beginning to learn that integration of broadcast, print, events, promotion and PR is more effective than a solo advertising approach. As a baseline for measuring the impact of this year’s Super Bowl, we measured last year’s campaigns.

For example, we looked at the amount of publicity that was generated for Super Bowl XXXIX in 2005.

Discussion about Super Bowl ads generated over 2.4 billion impressions—and had a value of over $25 million. This data was derived from Lexis-Nexis. The real impact was probably double these figures.

Super Bowl ads generated over 2,500 news stories.

Controversial advertisers like GoDaddy were near the top of the heap in terms of numbers of news stories generated. But advertisers like Ford, Pepsi and Budweiser learned how to leverage their Super Bowl media investment. These advertisers generated news coverage that had a higher value than the cost of a Super Bowl ad.

Of 40+ advertisers evaluated, 13 generated more than 100 million news impressions, which reduces the cost-per-impression of their Super Bowl investment by half.

So what does this mean to PR practitioners? For starters, as more and more advertisers look to develop ways to create engagement with their customers, the tools PR practitioners use to direct this effort will need to change and improve. As PR professionals, we will want to better understand how news coverage impacts and catalyzes this process.

We’ll follow-up in a week or two with a repeat of this analysis for 2006. I fully expect to see even higher levels of news engagement than last year. Stay tuned.


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