Posts Tagged ‘economy’


Monday, January 19th, 2009

Call it another side effect of a broken economy, but it’s been reported that Playboy will not be throwing its customary Super Bowl party at the game this year. It’s the first time in nine years that Hef and the gang will sit out the contest.


Thursday, January 15th, 2009

Leave it to the Super Bowl to help save America from the tanking economy.

Lost your job? Then don’t miss upcoming Super Bowl spots from and And after you get a job, you’ll want to invest some of the money while stock prices are low right? Check out the E*Trade commercial (feel free to invest in any of the other brands advertising in the big game). And, before you know it, it’ll be tax time. Thankfully, H&R Block has just announced that it will be airing it’s first Super Bowl commercial in five years.

H&R’s ad will feature the brand’s “You’ve Got People” message and “will  introduce some unexpected characters you haven’t seen with the H&R Block brand before,” according to a company spokesperson. You may remember the company’s last Super Bowl appearance in which they used a very unexpected character in the form of Willie Nelson and the Willie Nelson Advice Doll. Who will we see this shilling for the Block this year? We’re crossing our fingers for Sarah Palin. By game time, it’ll be almost four months since the election and we can think of dozens of tax-related jokes that would be perfect for a Palin-and-the-clan themed spot.

For those who were taking a bathroom break during Super Bowl XXXVIII, here’s Willie at his Super Bowl bestest.


Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 is tackling the bleak economy and 16-year high unemployment levels with humor. A recent New York Times article reports, the job search website’s upcoming Super Bowl ad will continue the company’s “Are you in the right job?” campaign which began during the Golden Globes and promote their newly redesigned website. Of course, the ad assumes you actually HAVE a job (albeit the wrong one) and aren’t one of the 11 million Americans who are currently unemployed.

Previous commercials in the “Right job?” campaign featured underperforming and out-of-their-element employees, including a scared construction worker clinging to life on a steel beam which we later see is only a few feet off the ground. Here’s another from the same campaign starring a squeemish EMT:


Monday, January 12th, 2009

grumpy_old_man1More news about the potential for “subdued” Super Bowl commercials in this year’s game, this time from the San Fransisco Chronicle. Stupid economy.

The Chron reports on the absence of perennial contenders like FedEx and GM, but also quotes Northwestern marketing professor Timothy Calkins, who predicts “a more quiet, serious tone” from this year’s ads. Others, like ad-maker Jeff Goodby, are saying it ain’t so. Goodby’s outlook, with which we agree, is that the Super Bowl will remain an entertainment oasis in an otherwise bleak economic desert and come game time, “people will be ready to drink some beer, eat potato chips and watch a football game and not get too heavy about it.”

Here’s hoping the ad man is right.

Advertising Age also analyzed the wisdom of shelling out $100,000 per second in a down economy. Here’s an excerpt:

There are two types of advertising messages on the Super Bowl: news and bravado. Messages related to news focus on something of note, such as a product launch or even a new benefit. Messages linked purely to bravado focus on entertainment and creative impact alone.

When facing a recession, bravado is a risky approach because the link to the product tends to be weak. Indeed, managers who focus on bravado messages are likely to find themselves walking tightropes of scrutiny, where observers banter about whether the brand is signaling economic strength or financial foolishness.

Whatever the tone or message, one thing is for sure: With so much on the line (this year more than others), marketers and advertisers will be watching the performace of their ads very closely. That makes polls like SpotBowl even more important than ever.