Splashy ads grab major YouTube views
Canadians go online to watch the commercials they can’t see on TV
Searching the Internet for the American Super Bowl commercials Canadians don’t get on TV on has become a national pastime, but that’s about to change.
Five years of Google search data shows that every year, more Canadians search Google for Super Bowl commercials than Americans and our searches outnumber our giant neighbour to the south the most around game day, when Canadian broadcasters have been subbing out splashy American ads for Canadian ones.
That hunger for American ads is why the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission announced Thursday it will stop Canadian broadcasters from subbing in Canadian ads for American ones during the Super Bowl as of 2017.
“The best commercials are coming from the U.S. where they have more skin in the game, given what they’re paying for advertising,” said Kenneth Wong, Professor of Marketing at Queen’s School of Business.
“In fact, many of the Canadian ads shown at the Super Bowl are just regular ads, nothing special done for the Super Bowl.”
In the meantime, it’s become more important for Super Bowl ads to make the most of the buzz online, he said. More companies are making “teasers,” which are essentially online ads for their Super Bowl ads.
For example, Victoria’s Secret filmed an online spot of its models playing football that is just as a teaser for its main ad during the game.
“When you’re spending $4.5 million on a single exposure of a national ad, you want to do everything possible to make sure that ad is seen by people,” Wong said. “So, you make an ad for an ad.”
More than 70-million total minutes of Super Bowl ads — and teasers for ads — have been watched on YouTube so far, which is nearly triple the amount watched by this time last year, Google reports.
According to Cheri Bradish, research chair in sport marketing, Ted Rogers School of Management, the immense popularity of online Super Bowl ads goes hand-in-hand with a shift away from watching sports on TV to watching sports on other platforms.
“The paradigm is clearly shifted in how consumers, particularly young consumers, are consuming sports,” she said.
A Victoria’s Secret 90- second teaser ad showed supermodels fully dressed as football players, although the actual Super Bowl ad shows the models dressed in Victoria’s Secret lingerie.
Carnival Cruise Lines is trying to boost its image with its first-ever Super Bowl ad after several years of bad publicity from illnesses on cruise ships and the sinking of the Costa Concordia wreck in 2012.