The Game, The Ads, The Hashtags- Live from NJ, It’s Super Bowl XLVIII #SB48

In two months, the biggest #NFL party will roll into MetLife Stadium in New Jersey.

The Super Bowl is coming to town!


As you can imagine, my state is in full swing gearing up for all the Super Bowl festivities. We have quite a tough act to follow. The last Super Bowl was held at the Mercedes Benz Superdome in New Orleans one week before Mardi Gras! I know a few people who have suggested that every Super Bowl should be held in NOLA due to the city’s layout, culture, and climate. On my most recent trip to New Orleans, I was able to chat with a few event planners and I gleaned an idea of the peripheral fun and excitement the NY/NJ metro area can anticipate. The Super Bowl will be a great opportunity for local businesses of all types. I wish them the best with their Super Bowl related endeavors.

I am curious about the weather, the contending teams and the festivities as well as what we can expect from the ad world’s commercials that accompany the “big game”. After all, I know some people who are far more entertained by the commercials than the game itself. In his interesting AdAge article, E.J Schultz points out many factors that may affect the commercials featured on the Super Bowl broadcast this year. I read Schultz’s article shortly after reading Todd Wasserman’s article about ad recall and “brand linkage”. With millions of ad dollars at stake per half-minute, I wonder if this year’s Super Bowl ads will have a different feel and direction.

I also wonder how many commercials will feature hashtags in 2014. Though the number of hashtags featured in Super Bowl ads increased in 2013, I was surprised that not every tv commercial or ad campaign featured a hashtag.

I for one was watching the game with my mobile in hand, tweeting, and keeping an eye on the fast and furious so called “Brand Bowl” on social media. When an ad that I wanted to refer to did not have a hashtag, I was frustrated and skipped my tweet. The lack of hashtags was part of the reason I ended up tweeting more about the football game than the commercials. I think the number of featured hashtags did a great job of generating real time conversation on twitter and I found it interesting to follow.

If you would like to test your memory and your personal brand linkage accuracy, check out this deck I made celebrating the hashtags of Super Bowl 47.

Super Bowl XLVII Ad Hashtag / Brand Quiz from Jenn Surowitz


Here’s to an uncovered, action packed, ad packed Super Bowl 48,


PS: Though I root weekly for my local Giants and Jets, since the beginning of this NFL season, I have been keeping my fingers crossed for a Bronco vs. Saints showdown in the “Swamps of Jersey”. Just a few more weeks and I shall see…

2 thoughts on “The Game, The Ads, The Hashtags- Live from NJ, It’s Super Bowl XLVIII #SB48

  1. Nice piece. I guessed 8 out of 10 on that, but certainly the hashtags is what made them memorable, even the one from last year. Now, I’d like to know how many hashtags were there, if any, dialing it back another year or 2 from 2011. #arousemycuriosity

    • Thanks so much, Kenny. You got a good score! I think it is interesting that you felt a stronger product linkage because of the hashtag.

      To answer your question, I will venture an estimate. I don’t have an exact number of ads featuring a hashtag in 2011 (or earlier).
      In 2013, by my count, there were about 25 hashtags featured in about 50 ads, (about 50%).
      In 2012, there could not have been more than 10 hashtags featured in about 50 ads, (about or slightly less than 20%).
      In 2011 I doubt if more than 2 or 3 ads (and probably no more than 5) featured a hashtag, estimating about 50 ads, (about 10%).

      Taking into consideration that this year we are using hashtags on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn and good old Twitter, I expect most ads on the 2014 Super Bowl broadcast to feature a hashtag. After all, no one brand/product/company wants to be left out of the conversation. All the social media channels are competing to host the conversations! It will be interesting to see if Twitter and Facebook (and others) split the traffic/conversation in 2014 too. From my personal 2013 experience, my Facebook feed was pretty sluggish until the Superdome blackout when it picked up a bit. My Twitter feed was lively throughout the game. Of course traffic and conversation will come down to each individual, social media channel preference and personal usage. -Jenn

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