Advertising outside the echo chamber



Friday 31-01-2020 17:00

by: Andrew Frank, VP analyst at Gartner


Strong demand
And yet, defying the death-knell of mass media, advertiser demand for Super Bowl ads was surprisingly strong this year. In November, Fox reported its Super Bowl LIV inventory sold out earlier than it has for the past nine years – at record prices as high as $5.6m (£4.2m) per 30-second spot according to Ad Week. This lines up with Gartner research that indicates CMOs upped their investments in paid media from 23 per cent to 26 per cent of their total marketing budgets in 2019, and their commitment to TV remained solid, even though overall marketing budgets dropped for this first time since 2014. How can we explain all this?

Ironically, rather than cannibalizing Super Bowl ad investments, digital media has greatly amplified their reach, frequency, and impact. Last year, Ipsos reported that as many people had seen Super Bowl ads on YouTube as on live TV (per NetImperative) – and more than half are viewed on mobile devices. Perhaps more important, these ads drive valuable engagement in the form of social media conversations. According to Engagement Labs, Bud Light, for example, drove more than a 1000 per cent increase in conversations following its 2019 Super Bowl ad series. Earned media isn’t dead, but it needs a big paid media spark to set it off. And the Super Bowl provides a singular ignition opportunity.

In keeping with this irony, three of TV’s most threatening digital competitors, Google, Facebook, and Amazon, all stepped up to get in this year’s game. We can infer that, with all their data and processing capacity, they evaluated the opportunity thoroughly before committing.


Read the full Mobile Marketing Magazine article, here.

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