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Super Bowl's infamous ads - How are they fairing on social media in the run up to the big game?

31 January 2013

Super Bowl. The sporting event of the year for many… and not just for sporting fanatics around the world! It’s also a prime opportunity for brands to invade the pitch during the all-important advertising space in the breaks of the game.

We took a look at the social media discussion, over the past seven days, around five of the adverts creating the most hype ahead of the big game at the weekend. These are: Bud-Light, Coca-Cola, M&M’s, Taco Bell and Volkswagen (VW). Many of these brands are now classed as Super Bowl ad veterans.


As you will notice from the buzz volume chart above, one of the most established brands, Coca-Cola, which is no stranger to advertising during the Super Bowl, came out on top with the highest number of mentions in reference to this weekend’s big game with 6,756. Seasoned games advertiser VW took second spot with 4,004 comments. Bud-Light came third and accounted for 1,656 mentions. Taco Bell received 1,622 mentions whilst M&M’s trailed its rivals with just 230 comments.

Knowing who received the most mentions on social media is all well and good, but it’s also important to measure and analyse the sentiment of the brand discussion. As we all know, making the biggest noise on social doesn’t mean you are the most engaged brand.


From the sentiment chart above you can see that Bud-Light had the largest percentage of positive mentions with a staggering 92.6% of the total mentions. Some of these were about the brand starting its Super Bowl advertising campaign early:


Other mentions showed the advert was already doing its job on engagement.



In comparison, VW received the highest number of negative comments accounting for 4.3%, the majority of which questioned whether or not the advert was racist:


One social media user appeared to think the whole advert wasn’t up to scratch:


Overall, it’s important to point out that all of the five brands included in this quick analysis scored low on negative sentiment. By looking at a handful of brands which are advertising during this year’s Super Bowl game, you can see how beneficial it is to get an engaged audience on social ahead of the most important night in the advertising calendar.

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