Which Super Bowl advertisers won the digital game? Verizon, Bud Light, Pepsi

A look at how the top Super Bowl brands performed across digital channels during the big game.

Which Super Bowl advertisers won the digital game? Verizon, Bud Light, Pepsi | DeviceDaily.com

The Patriots may have walked away with another Super Bowl win, but the for marketers, the real competition was focused on Super Bowl brand performance across the digital landscape. Based on the first set of data released by social media channels and analytics platforms, the biggest online buzz was generated by Verizon with its “The Team That Wouldn’t Be Here” spot, Bud Lights’ crossover ad with HBO, the NFL’s “The 100 Year Game” ad featuring 40 NFL MVPs and Pepsi’s Super Bowl spots with Cardi B, Lil Jon and Steve Carrell.

Verizon won the video game. Verizon’s “The Team That Wouldn’t Be Here” ad topped both YouTube and iSpot.tv’s list of most popular Super Bowl ads. YouTube had Verizon at number one for the Super Bowl ad with the most game-day views.

Runners up on YouTube included Amazon’s “Not Everything Makes the Cut” at number two, followed by Jeep’s “Big Game Blitz.”

Overall, YouTube said viewership of Super Bowl ads was up 58 percent over last year, and up 78 percent on mobile. Even with the substantial increase in views on mobile devices, Scott Ings, VP of product for Apptimize, believes Super Bowl brands are not optimizing their campaigns when it comes to mobile.

“There still seems like a missed opportunity to have an active mobile component to some of these ad campaigns. I get dozens of notifications on my phone every day, but during those three hours where all these brands can be relatively confident I am watching the game and their ads, none of them — that I’m aware of — used something like mobile push to get active engagement beyond the TV ads,” says Ings.

iSpot.tv, a TV ad measurement platform, reported Verizon’s Super Bowl ad had the largest digital share of voice (SOV) across YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, as well as Google, Bing and Yahoo. The brand’s digital SOV reached 11.15 percent by 11:00pm ET Sunday night, following the game.

The number two Super Bowl brand with the largest SOV according to iSpot.tv was Microsoft’s “We Will All Win” promoting its Xbox adaptive game controller — which earned a 7.8 percent.

iSpot found that the total number of Super Bowl spots dropped from 83 during last year’s Super Bowl to 60 spots during Super Bowl LIII. The company reported that the official Super Bowl ads on game day this year generated 48 million total online views across YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, and 1.1 million social actions — with more than 2.9 billion estimated social impressions.

Verizon, Mr Peanut, Bud Light won Twitter. Verizon also drove the most video views on a single tweet, according to Twitter.

The platform hosted its annual #BrandBowl event this year, awarding a total of five honors attached to Super Bowl campaigns. Verizon took home the #VideoReplay award, while Mr Peanut was the #MVP award winner with the highest percentage of all brand related Tweets during the game.

Bud Light’s “Joust” ad, that included promotions for HBO’s Game of Thrones series, drove the highest velocity of most Tweets-per-minute — an honor Twitter defined as its #Blitz award. The #QuarterBack award, the brand with the most retweets on a single Tweet during the game, went to Marvel Studios for its Avengers End Game trailer.

Pepsi took the trophy for earned media on Instagram (behind the NFL). Apart from the NFL itself, Pepsi earned more media on Instagram than other Super Bowl advertisers, according to influencer campaign analytics platform InfluencerDB. Pepsi generated $104,888 worth of earned media value and 218,627 likes on Instagram.

“Pepsi leverages not only one but three stars for the brand’s Super Bowl commercial. Cardi B, Steve Carell, and Lil Jon come together to promote Pepsi as being a ‘more than okay’ alternative to Coca Cola,” says InfluencerDB CEO Robert Levenhage, “The traditional media reach of these celebrities is directly translated into social media reach.”

Coming in just behind Pepsi, and the only other brand to top $100,000 worth of earned media value was Doritos with $102,120 worth of earned media value and 439,887 likes, more than double the number of likes Pepsi received.

It should be noted that the NFL dominated the share of earned media among the top ten Super Bowl advertisers. Of the total $3.6 million worth of earned media generated buy the top ten Super Bowl brands, the NFL accounted for $3.1 million — with 11,083,875 total likes. To determine earned media value of the top Super Bowl brands, the company analyzed all Instagram posts from channels with 15,000 or more followers from January 28 to February 4, 2018 that mentioned the respective Super Bowl brand, or used a branded hashtag combined with, at least, one Super Bowl related hashtag (#SuperBowl, #SBLIII, etc).

Pepsi and Bud Light won across the digital ecosystem. Talkwalker, a social media analytics firm, reported Pepsi was the top trending Super Bowl brand with more than 71,800 total mentions — peaking during the Pepsi sponsored halftime show. Talkwalker’s findings are based on data gathered from blogs, news sites, forums and social media channels 30 days prior to the game through midnight February 4, 2019.

Following Pepsi, per Talkwalker’s data, was Doritos with over 29,7000 mentions and Bud Light in third place with 13,400 mentions.

The marketing technology platform 4C monitored sentiment for social media conversations around Super Bowl advertisers during the game. The company said Expensify, a first-time Super Bowl brand, earned a 96 percent positive sentiment rating, the highest of all the Super Bowl advertisers.

“With ever-increasing competition for consumer attention across platforms and devices, the Super Bowl represents a unique opportunity for brands to reach a large audience with messaging on TV and digital channels. Brands like Expensify, which captured audience attention through a humorous ad featuring 2 Chainz and Adam Scott, and Bud Light, which killed off its own ‘Dilly Dilly’ spokesman in a re-created Game of Thrones scene, sparked positive social media conversation,” said 4C CMO Aaron Goldman.

The Bud Light ad, according to 4C’s report, saw 90 percent positive sentiment.

Which Super Bowl advertisers won the digital game? Verizon, Bud Light, Pepsi | DeviceDaily.com

Bud Light was the most mentioned Super Bowl brand globally on Twittter, according to Salesforce which tracked conversations related to Super Bowl advertisers using its Social Studio marketing solutions. Based on Salesforce’s findings, the brand earned 31,545 mentions and a 73.1 percent positive sentiment. Pepsi ranked second on Salesforce’s list of most mentioned Super Bowl advertisers with 22,600 mentions on Twitter and an 83.2 percent positive sentiment.

“Our data shows that the Bud Light/Game of Thrones ad came out on top. It was a surprise to most and extremely popular because of the unique content combination of Game of Thrones and Anheuser Busch,” wrote Tom Hasselman, Salesforce’s director of product marketing, on the company’s blog.


About The Author

Amy Gesenhues is Third Door Media’s General Assignment Reporter, covering the latest news and updates for Marketing Land and Search Engine Land. From 2009 to 2012, she was an award-winning syndicated columnist for a number of daily newspapers from New York to Texas. With more than ten years of marketing management experience, she has contributed to a variety of traditional and online publications, including MarketingProfs.com, SoftwareCEO.com, and Sales and Marketing Management Magazine. Read more of Amy’s articles.

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