AD TRENDS: What’s Behind Super Bowl Commercials

Come Monday, people may not remember the score but they’ll all remember one thing about the Super Bowl, the commercials.

In the advertising world, it’s about lasting impressions.

“It may very well be the moment that I went oh, this is what I want to do for a living. That was when I saw apple’s 1984 spot,” said Sandy Henry, remembering a Super Bowl ad from 30 years ago.

Henry is professor at Drake University who teaches on the power of past and present super bowl advertising.  She said commercials have changed quite a bit over the years.

Henry has analyzed older commercials like the 1993 McDonald’s commercial featuring NBA stars Larry Bird and Michael Jordan, which focused mainly on the product.

“That spot was all about McDonald’s, because they were competing to get that burger,” she said.

However, Henry says advertisers now are focusing more on entertainment.

“The ads are pretty much entertainment and hopefully they sell something and more often they don’t,” she said.

A handful of the Super bowl commercials have already been uploaded to the internet for viewers to watch ahead of the game. Henry said the companies like Chrysler, who are known for withhold their commercials until the game, actually do better in sales.

“It’s not always those spots that get all the hype before the game that turn out to be the best,” Henry said.

The average 30-second ad space during the Super Bowl sold for $4-million dollars this year.  Last year, the ads went for around $3.8-million.  This year’s Super Bowl is expected to attract a 108-million viewers.

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