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Advertising The Almighty Buck

Super Bowl Ads: Worth the Price Or Waste of Time? 347

samzenpus writes "Every year companies are willing to dish out big bucks to reach tens of millions of consumers with their Super Bowl ads. With an average price tag of $4 million for a 30-second commercial, this year is no exception. We've seen: beer obsessed frogs, field goal kicking horses, celebrities drinking various beverages, explosions of all sizes, homages to 1984, and day trading babies in the past. Since talking about the commercials has become almost as popular as the game itself, here's a place to do just that. What have you liked and what do you think would have been better left on the cutting room floor."
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Super Bowl Ads: Worth the Price Or Waste of Time?

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  • Ads are toxic. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Snufu ( 1049644 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:33PM (#46136689)

    The superbowl doesn't change that.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The NFL is toxic.

    • by ozmanjusri ( 601766 ) <aussie_bob@[ ] ['hot' in gap]> on Sunday February 02, 2014 @09:08PM (#46136879) Journal
      What is this superbowl thing? I've seen a lot of references to it lately, but not a lot of explanation.

      From the online chatter, it seems to be a celebration of TV adverts and (junk?) food, so I assume the super bowl being referred to is an oversized container for fried chicken wings etc. Is that correct?

      I understand why the majority of Americans would be so wholeheartedly involved in such an event, but it seems a bit irresponsible to an outside observer. With all your obesity, diabetes and heart issues, I think it'd be better for your nation's health to steer these sort of events towards less sedentary pursuits.

      Why not include a healthy sporting event in the day's activities, for example?

      • Re:Ads are toxic. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by epyT-R ( 613989 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @09:37PM (#46137003)

        Originally, it was about football.. Now it's about rampant consumerism. Of course, europeans and aussies would know nothing about rabid obsession over soccer...

        • Re:Ads are toxic. (Score:4, Insightful)

          by ChunderDownunder ( 709234 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @09:52PM (#46137083)

          aussies would know nothing about rabid obsession over soccer...

          Damn straight. World cup notwithstanding, soccer is a summer curiosity here, watched mainly by migrants from Europe and their grandchildren.

          • aussies would know nothing about rabid obsession over soccer...

            Damn straight. World cup notwithstanding, soccer is a summer curiosity here, watched mainly by migrants from Europe and their grandchildren.

            Cricket, on the other hand...

      • by Hamsterdan ( 815291 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:08PM (#46137179)

        Well, we do have curling in Canada

      • by Eskarel ( 565631 )

        Because everyone else is doing so much better on the obesity front? India, Mexico, and China are all facing much larger obesity epidemics than anywhere in the west, including the US, and the rest of the West is actually no better than the US. Even places like Italy and Greece are facing problems as the demands of a modern lifestyle mean that families don't have time to cook traditional foods and the same convenience foods are doing the same thing there as everywhere else.

        For all that America is the home of

      • by neiras ( 723124 )

        What is this superbowl thing? I've seen a lot of references to it lately, but not a lot of explanation.

        I for one welcome our superb owl overlords.

        Whooo! Whoo-whooo!

    • Re:Ads are toxic. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Eskarel ( 565631 ) on Monday February 03, 2014 @02:24AM (#46138461)

      Advertising is a way to let people who may be interested in purchasing your product or using your service that you exist, nothing more, nothing less. On a fundamental level, there's nothing wrong with it.

      There are certainly issues with some ads, in terms of the products they sell, the stereotypes they reinforce, and in some cases the veracity of the claims that they make(though outside political advertising regulation keeps that sort of thing largely in check. There can also be issues with the tools advertisers use to reach us and in some ways the degree to which they manipulate us, but that's not the same as saying "Ads are toxic".

      That kind of attitude is so pointlessly naive it's ridiculous. Are signs on shops toxic? Yellow pages advertisements? Websites for products or services? Review Sites? Slashdot Articles? All are a form of advertising.

  • by Amorymeltzer ( 1213818 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:33PM (#46136691)

    Neither: Waste of Money.

    • Since I found comedians live tweeting the super bowl, my opinion has changed. Brands ill never buy setting up punchline after punchline, and since I have ota only, it costs no more than the internet connection I already have.

      It's worth the price to the advertisers, and worth the price to me.

      They wouldn't pay for it if it somehow didn't make sense. Budweiser and coca cola for example, they basically have to put in an appearance. They went with the feel good spots because they aren't going to be the talk of t

      • Now that you've laughed about them, in a couple weeks you're going to forget about the "never buy" part and just remember the "felt strongly" part. Then when you're buying the products, the "brand you'll never buy" will be the brand you vaguely remember, so that's the one you'll put in the basket.

    • Isn't this question really only relevant to companies considering buying ad time? To the average Joe, who cares. It's just interesting how high price is. The price is determined by the market. If it really was a waste of money, then advertisers buy and the price would go down.
  • slashdot... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Titus Groan ( 2834723 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:33PM (#46136695)
    slashdot news for nerds^H^H^H^H^H americans.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:53PM (#46136805)

      It's no secret that Slashdot's traffic has been stagnant at best, if not decreasing. Alexa's and Compete's numbers don't paint a rosy picture. Their estimates aside, I think it's obvious that Slashdot's popularity and influence has been on a decline for some time now.

      Shitty, irrelevant stories like these do not help. This story is purely about marketing. There's absolutely no technological aspect to it. Nor are science or math involved. This story does not belong on Slashdot, plain and simple.

      This is the kind of crap we can find at reddit. We come here to Slashdot specifically because we don't want to see stories like these!

      The new ultra-shitty beta site sure doesn't help the situation. Now we get to see irrelevant, unwanted stories displayed worse than they currently are, with discussion that's much harder to follow, and damn near impossible to participate in.

      Slashdot likely won't ever regain the influential position it once had. Shitty stories like this and the shitty beta site will make that a certainty, though. They'll continue to drive away the few remaining users.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        It's completely irrelevant. Dice was completely clueless when they acquired slashdot. They've turned it into a corporate-loving, irrelevant, average, mediocre, wannabe-like-everyone-else site. Slashdot has a unique audience and which Dice has completely ignored, and they've directed this place like every other millenial-driven ADHD twitter clone.

        Money kills good things. Dice are fucking idiots. Thanks for fucking this one up guys.

      • by Dan East ( 318230 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @11:11PM (#46137509) Journal

        Yeah, because it's not like [] Slashdot had stories about [] the Superbowl [] during its heyday [].

        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) *

          I suppose the key difference was that back then that wasn't the only content. These days about half the stories are just some regurgitated press release or clickbait bullshit. I do try to vote it down, but you can't vote up non-existent stories.

          Maybe the internet itself has changed. There is still good technical info out there, but somehow it seems harder to find. You would think that search engines would make it easier now, but a lot of it has migrated to forums and social networking where it is lost in a

      • It's no secret that Slashdot's traffic has been stagnant at best, if not decreasing. Alexa's and Compete's numbers don't paint a rosy picture...

        Sure, but does Netcraft confirm it???

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      slashdot news for nerds^H^H^H^H^H americans.

      I'm american and I don't watch the superbowl, neither do most people I know. The superbowl is the bread and circuses for the mindless sheep.

    • ...and yet, it could have been a nerd story, if only they'd have given up a bit of bias. I don't eat from the super bowl, but I'm lead to believe that Goldieblox advertised on it: []

      Surely engineering/tech toys for girls *is* news for nerds? Why on earth would you run a story about advertising on the super bowl without mentioning it, not least because it didn't cost them millions to put on.


  • Commercials (Score:4, Insightful)

    by iamwhoiamtoday ( 1177507 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:34PM (#46136701)

    My take on Superbowl commercials is the exact same as the rest of the year. Namely, I avoid commercials wherever I can. Got rid of cable back in 2010, in favor of Netflix and other streaming options. Not looking back.

    • by antdude ( 79039 )

      I am reversed for Super Bowls. I record and watch mostly for the commercials instead of the games. Yes, I can watch online, but I prefer OTA HD quality!

      Also, this year's commercials were weaker than usual. I even made a poll about them: [] ...

      • Friends of mine do a party where we do record it, watch the commercials, and fast-forward over the game, occasionally stopping if the football's interesting.

        Since I'm writing this afterwards, it's not a spoiler, but while this year's commercials were below average, they were a lot better than the game.

        • by antdude ( 79039 )

          Agreed. Even better than half-time show even though I didn't like that music genre. In fact, last year's power outage made the game better and interesting!!

    • by dubdays ( 410710 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @09:04PM (#46136857)
      I want the Radio Shack of the 80s back. Really, anything would be better than the abomination it's been turned into.
      • That's probably one of the reasons they closed in Canada. Radio Shack used to be the place to go when you needed some components (which they stopped selling). the 200-1 electronic kits, the Armatron, I miss those kind of things...

      • by jeffb (2.718) ( 1189693 ) on Monday February 03, 2014 @12:44AM (#46137991)

        Hey, guys -- THEY STILL SELL PARTS. They've just compacted them into a set of shallow drawers, rather than displaying them on pegboard. I haven't counted, but it seems to me that they've got a better selection of components than they did in the 80s. Besides the obvious (how many varieties of blue LEDs and microcontrollers did they carry in 1980?), they've still got fairly robust coverage of things like DC connectors and resistors/capacitors/other passive stuff.

        I miss having the nerd stuff prominently displayed, but if they need to give more square footage to phones to stay afloat, I'm happy to pull out drawers instead of seeing it all disappear.

        (Remember Lafayette Electronics, another chain that sold components? If so, you're old, too.)

    • by elbles ( 516589 )
      I liked the ad's execution (especially Chucky and Alf), but I want the Radio Shack of the 80s back. You know, the one that helped bring Johnny Five back to life, not the one trying to be Best Buy Junior (or, soon enough, Crazy Eddie's, Nobody Beats The Wiz, etc.).
    • I can't figure out where Radio Shack is going to get the money to renovate all of their stores after they blew their wad on a Super Bowl ad.

  • by pubwvj ( 1045960 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:50PM (#46136787)

    Supper bowl? Is that what I eat soup out of or what I feed the dog in? Both? Ads for it must be a waste of time...

  • What is that? It wasn't on my tv so at least in my case it was a waste of dollars.

  • by hhawk ( 26580 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @08:59PM (#46136829) Homepage Journal

    Ads are not sold by the second, but rather by a price per thousand viewers, known as CPM or Cost Per Thousand. On a CPM basis the Super Bowl ads are equal or below the cost of regular ads... If you want to reach a lot of people they can be an effective part of a marketing mix.

  • Doberhuahua (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @09:07PM (#46136875)

    I think this Audi [] commercial is hilarious and hope the word "Doberhuahua" is now used for "something that sounds like a good idea, but would actually be very bad." Like, "That Unity interface is a Doberhuahua."

  • I've long since quit drinking, I'm not buying any new technology gadgets or switching connectivity providers of any sort, and pretty much not spending money on anything because of tax season. I don't even care about the halftime show. Its a confirmed waste.
  • Until they get AdBlock for TV I'll continue to download the Superbowl from Pirate Bay so that I don't have to watch the ads.
  • and football as a whole, honestly. IMO a big majority of football culture is that of ignorant and/or dumb, brutish people.
    • What if I told you, there was a stats side to it (and all sports games), that let's your create spreadsheets and work with numbers. There's also a fantasy side to it, albeit sans goblins and wizards. Central point here being: there are sports nerds.
  • than the crap being spewed over the air during the game... []

  • Open road and a motorcycle starts off down it, all you hear is the noise of the bike as the gears are shifted.
    Buuuuuud - Wissssssssss - Eeeeeeerrrrr - Beeeerrrrrrrr.

  • Worth it? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MasseKid ( 1294554 ) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @11:06PM (#46137485)
    Absolutely. It's the ONLY time of the year you can buy a commercial and if it's moderately funny have people actually go out and LOOK for your commercial to see it again. Where else can you get your commercial to be talk around the water cooler? We're still talking about 1984 30 years later....
    • You know what? You don't need to blow 4 mil on it. We even have shows dedicated to funny, entertaining commercials, and I'm pretty sure so do a lot of other countries. Yes, believe it or not, a whole show where they show NOTHING but ads and yes, they have rather good ratings, even. Why? Because these ads are actually entertaining!

      I know it's a completely outlandish concept for most advertisers, even some companies, but if you give people what they WANT they will more readily accept getting it. If you cram d

  • Just before DotCom became "DotBomb". []

  • They could have chosen the Constitution for that one long-ass commercial that preceded the Super Bowl, but no, they use the declaration of independence. Then, get this, they cut out all the bits about the 'savage indians' & expect no one to notice. I'm no fan of centuries-old racism, but I kinda feel like they're treating a centuries-old document like a photo of Stalin & his ghost friends. Stalin has ghost friends right?
  • Well, I think I was less offended by my least favorite registrar's ad this year, but still moving my business away from them.

    Don't think Sonos ad worked too well; owning several, I understood, but it was a bit of a leap.

    Other than that... Did you see the cuuuute little puppies...

  • Microsoft stitched together a short Super Bowl ad [] that (IMO) was less than the sum of its longer individual films [], most of which would get you to tear up.

  • Most of the ads that had celebrities in them ended up being for products I don't want. I can't really think of any that were interesting and for products that I have any interest in purchasing.
  • I thought this was all about "The Biggest Concert of the Year" where some remarkably mediocre musicians are promoted as though they actually have talent.

    Oh, and BTW... there might be a football game between some over-rated commercials.

    This event has become nothing but an enormous amount of hype.

  • What would have been better left on the cutting room floor? Denver's offensive line.

  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday February 03, 2014 @06:06AM (#46139071)

    Or rather, against them.

    With ads being so expensive, it tells me that the product they are trying to advertise are overpriced since they can afford those ads.

  • How is it a legendary nerd news site missed this? I practically *squeed* when a new ad for GoldieBlox came on (complete with another great song parody). I know they won their ticket into the big Superb Owl ad frenzy courtesy of Intuit, but it was so awesome to see them get this level of exposure.

    Also, their spot was spot-on and very well done!

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