SuperBowl LI commercials

February 6, 2017

SuperBowl half time commercials are notorious for their prestige, cost and occasional political posturing. This year was no different, with the new administration in the Whitehouse, many brands used it as an opportunity to show their disagreement with many of the early policies, not least on immigration.

From a creative point of view, a brand needs to take very careful steps when making any political statement. The brand exposure for a halftime commercial is huge, of course, the company can expect viral shares galore (just like this blog post!), but the way the advert comes across could either damage, or improve, the brands perception in the eyes of the public.

For something as exposed as a SuperBowl ad break, only the best creative agencies in the world can really be trusted to portray your brand in a way that, not only makes a statement, but doesn’t look like it’s just piggybacking for cheap brand exposure.

Coca Cola’s 2017 edition (‘It’s Beautiful’) was actually produced at the tail end of 2016, but still feels suitably apt for the issues of the day. The brand has always had an ethos of inclusion, togetherness and diversity, so it doesn’t feel like too much of a big step for them to produce an ad like this.

Air B’n’B got in on the act with their short but sweet ad ‘#WeAccept’. The accommodation-rental brand has taken some flak recently, being criticised for not dealing with discriminatory hosts, and they used this piece to make their point, while taking a sideways swipe at the ever-growing issue of racism in America.

Budweiser’s, ‘Born The Hard Way’ also used the theme of immigration at it’s core. A clever though provoking piece getting to the heart of success stories in America.

It wasn’t only immigration and racism that were dealt with on the night, AUDI addressed the issue of gender inequality in their ad ‘Daughter’, a beautiful piece based around a soap box derby.

One last piece didn’t hold back in it’s political stance. Construction firm ’84 Lumber’ have taken a lot of criticism over their ad ‘The Entire Journey’, which completely divides opinion. The actual half time ad showed a shorter version, encouraging viewers to go online to watch the full version (which crashed their website!). Regardless of the criticisms or praises, i’s turning out to be the most shared viral SuperBowl ad this year.