Will Social Media Win The Super Bowl?

Following the rise of social media, the Super Bowl is no longer just a broadcast television event, as millions of Americans will use social platforms to discuss, brag, talk trash, and commiserate both during and after the big game on February 7. And that “second screen” phenomenon offers advertisers a chance to reap the benefits of audience engagement around the event, without having to splash out millions for a single 30-second TV spot.

As noted previously, Snapchat is selling ads for brands that want to appear as part of its “Live Story” for the event, with brand sponsors including Pepsi, Amazon, Marriott, and Budweiser reportedly spending sums “somewhere in the low seven figures” for short video ads interspersed in the Live Story. While that’s admittedly a lot of cash, they’re also getting more than they would from a TV spot alone, with repeated placements and takeover-style exposure during the game.

The same is true of advertising and sponsorship deals on the other big social platforms, which also offer cost efficiencies in terms of audience reach and engagement. Marketers using Facebook and Instagram, for example, can take advantage of their “Reach & Frequency” product to create campaigns that deliver a set number of impressions, designated in advance, at a fixed price.

Crunching the numbers form, an advertiser using Reach & Frequency could theoretically reach over 100 million Facebook and Instagram users three or four times during the game for an investment of about $3 million; the savings could then be devoted additional exposure on Twitter, Snapchat, and Pinterest.

Sean O’Neal, president of Adaptly, noted that social media platforms allow marketers to benefit from continued engagement with the game after it’s over, piggybacking on discussion (read: gloating and wailing) in the days to come.

O’Neal opined: “Just because the big game is over doesn't mean your marketing investment should end too. It is equally as important to connect and engage with your audience even after the event because there are millions of ongoing conversations that are still happening on social, which is something unique to social versus TV. Memes and images the day after, poking fun at moments during halftime, and even discussions around the best and worst TV ads, all offer the perfect opportunity for brands to promote their content with social video advertising solutions.”

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  1. John Grono from GAP Research, February 4, 2016 at 7:14 a.m.
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