AXE releases Super Bowl ad encouraging fans to “Make love. Not war.”

January 18th, 2014 by Spotgeek
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AXE makes grooming products for men — or, more accurately, grooming products for teenagers and frat boys — so it makes sense that they’d release a Super Bowl spot featuring attractive women and dangling a prize of sending 25 fans into space. That’s what they did last year,  and it seemed to work okay for the brand.

So it’s refreshing (and a little surprising) to see that they’ve changed their formula with this year’s Big Game ad. AXE released an extended 60-second version of the spot earlier this week (it’ll be trimmed to 30 seconds for the game), making them the first of this year’s advertisers to pre-release their ad.

In it, soldiers and war-bound world leaders (including a Kim Jong-un lookalike) find love. The ad will promote AXE’s new fragrance “Peace” and ends with the tagline “Make love. Not war.” Check it out below and feel free to comment with your thoughts.

Jerry and George reunite for Seinfeld-themed Super Bowl ad, but for which brand?

January 17th, 2014 by Spotgeek
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Last week, the Internet was in a tizzy when photos were released of Jerry Seinfeld and Jason “George Costanza” Alexander at the iconic Tom’s Restaurant, which served as the diner backdrop in so many episodes of Seinfeld (Seinfeld co-creator Larry David was also on the scene). It was speculated that the duo were filming for Jerry’s web series “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” but it’s now been confirmed that Jerry and Jason were actually shooting a Super Bowl commercial.

Still no word about which company the commercial is for. Budweiser has said that celebrities will appear in two of its Bud Light spots, but a Seinfeldian ad doesn’t seem to fit the Bud Light brand. Glancing at this year’s brand lineup, possible contenders include Chobani or Dannon, or either Coca-Cola or Pepsi.  Our money is on Chobani or Dannon. We can definitely see Jerry and George having a heated debate about Greek yogurt.

Budweiser lineup to feature troops, “Puppy Love” and Arnold Schwarzenegger; could be strongest Bud lineup in recent years

January 17th, 2014 by Spotgeek
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Of all the advertisers in the Super Bowl, perhaps none has higher expectations than Anheuser-Busch. It makes sense. They not only purchase the most air time (between three and five minutes each year), they also pay big money to be the exclusive beer sponsor of the game. And when you go out of your way to make sure you have the event all to yourself, you’d better bring your A-game, right?

Last year, the Bud gang definitely did NOT bring their A-game. More like their C-minus-game. Their Clydesdale spot featuring a trainer being reunited with his horse was the lone bright spot for the beer maker, as half of their ad lineup (three spots) finished in the bottom 10 of the SpotBowl rankings. And despite having the most ads in the game and a product that’s well-suited for Super Bowl success, the past few years haven’t been the best for the brand. After winning four of the first seven SpotBowl titles (including a second place finish in the three they didn’t win), Anheuser-Busch hasn’t finished higher than third in each of the past three competitions.

To be fair, that doesn’t necessarily mean Anheuser-Busch’s ads are getting worse (except for last year), it just means the competition is getting better, and that’s a good thing. What’s also good is this year’s Bud lineup. Even though, at three-and-a-half minutes, it’s one minute shorter than the past two years, the lineup looks primed for a return to its former SpotBowl glory. Here’s what we can expect:

BUD LIGHT – Three ads under the new tagline, “The Perfect Beer for Whatever Happens.” Two of the Bud Light spots were filmed in New York City and will both feature celebrities. The “Epic Night” spots (a 60-second ad and a 30-second ad which play off each other) will be packed with celebrities, including Arnold Schwarzenegger. The third Bud Light spot – called “So Cool” – will promote a new re-closeable aluminum bottle.

BUDWEISER AND ANHEUSER-BUSCH – Two other spots for the Anheuser-Busch brand will feature the Clydesdale horses, and another – “Hero’s Welcome” – will pay tribute to soldiers returning from Afghanistan. While last year’s Clydesdale ad featured the bond between a horse and its trainer, this year’s ad, titled “Puppy Love,” will show a Clydesdale bonding with a puppy.

A Clydesdale AND an adorable puppy? We might as well give them the title right now.

Benched: E-Trade, Subway, and GoDaddy girls skip this year’s game

January 15th, 2014 by Spotgeek
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Almost as newsworthy as who WILL be in the Big Game are the annual announcements about which longtime Super Bowl advertisers will be sitting on the sidelines. This year, the list of no-shows includes Subway, the GoDaddy girls, and the E-Trade baby.

To be honest, none of them will be missed, with the possible exception of the E-Trade baby, who has built quite a loyal fan base since his first appearance in 2007. It’s hard to choose our favorite E-Trade baby spot because there have been so many, but we’ve included a standout performance below. (Check him out today at the ripe old age of five.)

Subway could benefit from a year off to fine tune their game plan. They always seems to be phoning it in with their Super Bowl ads, churning out the usual Jared-with-C-list-celebrities-and-athletes fare that they do all year long. (C’mon guys, it’s the Super Bowl!) Check out last year’s spot for a prime example.

The last absentee – the GoDaddy girls – really should have been cut from the team years ago. The brand’s risqué shtick was wearing thin back in 2005 and, while GoDaddy will appear in this year’s game, they’ve finally decided to clean up their act and focus their commercials on the services they actually provide (web domain name registration and hosting). An ad that actually promotes the product … now there’s a novel idea!

Doritos announces “Crash the Super Bowl” finalists: Which one would you vote for?

January 15th, 2014 by Spotgeek
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Doritos’ annual fan-made commercial contest – Crash the Super Bowl – has returned for its ninth year, and why shouldn’t it? It’s arguably the most successful Super Bowl promo ever created and it helps the brand score a boatload of media coverage and online buzz each year.

Yes, asking fans to create the Super Bowl commercial also means they don’t have to pay an advertising agency to do it for them, but they probably spend as much (if not more) to promote the contest (not to mention the $1 million prize), so it’s sort of a wash on the financial end.

Doritos has announced the five finalists that will compete for two spots in the Big Game. One will be chosen by the Doritos team and one by fans via an online poll. The spot with the most votes will win $1 million, and the creator of the spot that ranks higher in the USA Today Ad Meter ratings will be invited to work on the set of The Avengers: Age of Ultron. The guaranteed $1 million is a first for Doritos. In past Crash the Super Bowl contests, that prize was only awarded if the fan spot finished on top in USA Today’s annual Ad Meter rankings (which actually happened in 2011).

Check out all five finalists and cast your vote on the Doritos website. As cringe-worthy and disgusting as it may be, it’s safe to assume that “Finger Cleaner” will be the easy winner as the fan’s selection. It’s got more YouTube views (1.8M) than all of the other four finalists combined (1.3M). As for the brand’s choice, we’re going with “Time Machine.” It’s got a cute kid, a dog, and a stupid adult – three key ingredients for any great Super Bowl ad.