FanDuel's Live SB Ad Is Generating Huge Social Buzz

Fan Duel’s live Super Bowl ad with NFL great Rob Gronkowski is one of the more innovative approaches to advertising in the big game in recent memory. 

And the ad is driving huge social buzz in the lead-up to the game, according to Share Creative, the Miami-based social media marketing agency. 

Share deploys social listening techniques (including its own in-house data science team and proprietary tools) to better analyze data and understand consumer sentiment on social media. 

From November 1 of last year through January 24 the agency put its tools to work to see which Super Bowl advertisers are being most talked about and why.  

And the shop’s analysis finds that FanDuel’s effort with Gronk accounts for the largest conversation on social about ads in the upcoming game. The company gets big scores for both innovation and originality. 

In January FanDuel unveiled the details. In a live ad airing in the first commercial break in the third quarter, Gronkowski will attempt to kick a 25-yard field goal, which would be a shoo-in for any pro kicker. But Gronk was an offensive end. So, definitely not a shoo-in. 



And there’s a little bit of pressure on Gronk to make a good kick. If he makes it, FanDuel patrons who place a bet on the game will split a $10 million jackpot. 

According to Share Creative’s head of strategy Dee Nuncio, FanDuel’s formula of celebrity, live ad and potential jackpot will likely sustain conversation well after the game. 

Nuncio and her team analyzed Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Forums, Youtube, Pinterest and Reddit posts in the U.S. The overall volume of mentions captured in the analysis was just under 50,000.  

“We looked at the language that people used to understand how the ads might resonate, specifically we looked at the volume of conversations, sentiment, and verbatim ‘social artifacts’' to land on educated predictions," Nuncio says. 

Other findings from the analysis: 

Packaged popcorn brand PopCorners’ collaboration with ex-Breaking Bad stars gathered the largest amount of engagements as users reacted to the news that Bryan Cranston would return as Walter White and co-star Aaron Paul as Jesse for the commercial. Social chatter was off the charts in terms of excitement and enthusiasm towards the ad, per the analysis.

“Bringing the much-loved Breaking Bad duo back to the screen shows PopCorners dug into their audience's interests and passion points,” says Nuncio. “The campaign and brand should see continued positivity and shares around their first Super Bowl ad entry.” 

The analysis also found that Warner Bros. has generated the largest negative sentiment toward a brand in the game. That’s partially due to Ezra Miller’s lead role in The Flash movie—being advertised in the game and due out in the summer. Miller has been arrested a couple of times recently for alleged acts of violent behavior. Also James Gunn, the recently named Co-CEO of the DC Studios, has reportedly outraged fans for not going ahead with certain projects. 

“This convo is tied to a much bigger pop culture discussion [around] the DC cinematic universe and its dedicated, vocal fans,” says Nuncio.

M&Ms is also dealing with negative fallout from the controversy surrounding the temporary sidelining of the “spokescandies.” But the sentiment is not all bad, according to the analysis which found that people are theorizing about what will happen in the M&M SB spot, which the brand hasn’t disclosed yet.

“Added context to this just dropped today,” says Nuncio, noting “the spokes-candies have been pursuing other hobbies and interests. Green is building her own sneaker line and working with sneaker influencer/icon Jazzerai Allen-Lord. We knew the spokes-candies wouldn't be gone for long and this gives the brand an entry point to talk about audience-aligned interests in a way that makes sense.” And she adds, it gives the M&M’s SB spot a chance to make huge impact.

Per the analysis, a Doritos ad—featuring Jack Harlow, Missy Elliot and a song about a love triangle--achieved the largest share of positive mentions for a spot in this year’s game. The spot also has a social-based SB ticket giveaway contest tied to triangle-shaped haircuts.




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