In the midst of a very divided political climate, the big question going into Super Bowl LI was if marketers would give viewers a break or use this platform to chime in on hot topics like immigration and women’s rights.
We saw both. And, viewers went to Twitter to voice their response.
Some companies like Google, Bai and Mr. Clean kept their message true to their brand through light, clever advertisements. Ads from companies like Coca-Cola and Budweiser, were not meant to be directly political but viewers have been making criticisms with the hashtags #BoycottCoke and #BoycottBudwiser. Yes, Budwiser is spelled incorrectly in the trending hashtag, giving it, even more, momentum from both sides of the political spectrum.
On the flip side, we also saw brands like Audi, It’s a 10, Airbnb and 84 Lumber who were not shy with their politically forward messages. 84 Lumber, a construction and building supplies company aired a clip from the short film featuring an immigrant mother and daughter’s journey to America only to discover President Trumps’ prospective wall. Within an hour after it aired the full video had more than 6 million views.
In case you missed it, here’s an overview of some of the most talked about ads:
Google Home Units Respond to Super Bowl Ad
The Google Home ad inadvertently prompted confusion in homes of many of the speaker’s users. The ad highlighted how the Google Home smart speaker can make the consumer’s life easier by responding to “OK Google…” requests. While viewers who do not own a unit were able to see the convenience of the speaker, viewers who own the speaker tweeted how their unit actually responded to the commands in the commercial.
Bai Bai Bai
The healthy beverage company, Bai, captured viewers’ attention with a 30-second clip of Christopher Walken reciting lyrics from N-Sync’s song “Bai Bai Bai” while sitting with none other than Justin Timberlake. What most viewers don’t know, Timberlake joined the beverage company earlier this year, as the C “F” O – Chief Flavors Officer. Bai hit the nail on the head with this ironic and iconic ad.
Mr. Clean the Cleaner of Your Dreams
Mr.Clean showed his sexy side in a comical and surprising commercial. The ad shows a woman’s instant attraction to Mr. Clean’s character as he entices her with his housework skills. “You gotta love a man who cleans,” tagline sparked attention on Twitter. The @RealMrClean was also active on Twitter during the game trolling other advertisers. Viewers responded, crediting Mr.Clean for the best ad of the night.
Audi Promotes Gender Pay Equality
Audi’s ad, “Daughter” is being praised for the powerful gender pay equality message in Super Bowl commercial. The ad is narrated by a father who is watching his daughter compete in a cart race, the soft tone illustrates the father’s dreams for his daughter’s future. In Audi’s press release for the Super Bowl LI ad, the company said it is committed to supporting women’s pay equality. The car company tweeted, “Women are still paid 21% less than men. As a brand that believes in progress, we are committed to equal pay for equal work. #DriveProgress”
It’s a 10 – Four Years
In its first-ever Super Bowl commercial, It’s a 10 hair company combined humor with a bold political statement in the “Four Years” ad. The opening line, “America, we are in for at least four years of awful hair” very clearly used the platform to make a dig at President Trump’s infamous hair-do…and Twitter loved it.
Airbnb Criticizes Trumps Travel Ban in Super Bowl Ad
The Airbnb ad – “We Accept” – was produced just days after President Trump signed the order to temporarily close the border to refugees and citizens in seven Muslim countries. Through the advertisement, the travel company indirectly spoke out in opposition to the ban. The ad is narrated saying, “We believe no matter who you are, where you’re from, who you love or who you worship, we all belong. The world is more beautiful the more you accept.” As of the Monday after the big game, #WeAccept was trending topic on Facebook with almost 9,000 hits.