Craig Mikes, principal and executive creative director at Austin-based Proof Advertising, has a smart, cost-effective plan
For those of us with a touch of grey in our beards, the Super Big Bowl Game is still a major advertising event.
We used to long for the rare alignment of media, message and monetary investment that warranted such an extravagance. Our reels would be forever changed. We would run a super spot. Something that would rival the best of our craft and get us mentioned alongside E-Trade, Apple and Monster.com. But times changed, and advertising became more of a spectacle. Rankings took over and messaging was thrown out the window as we collectively opted for celebrity cameos and varied borrowed interests to propel the ads up the charts of USA today.
But I'm telling you I have the next great plan for capitalizing on this grandest day of marketing next year. Running a commercial on the big day during the big game is no longer enough. Marketers know it. Media agencies know it. Thirty seconds of messaging isn’t enough for even the best concept to achieve enough ROI to keep any brand manager employed. Nope, what you need now is hype and a lot of money. Not only will you need $5 million in media money for an average spot, you also need to spend an average of $850k on the spot, $150k for a catchy song and who knows how much to bring whoever out of retirement for that cameo. You need a $250k microsite or online game to drive traffic to. You need a social campaign, online activations and campaign extensions, PR, day-of activations for partners and select VIPs, and a whole lot of blood, sweat and tears to bring this buzzword-ridden, 360-degree brand invigoration to life for 30 seconds of air. Not since the movie Gravity has 30 seconds of air been so valuable. So how does any brand outside the monetary elite possibly compete?
Here’s how: Next year, buy your spot placement early and proudly announce your client’s major marketing investment. Can’t afford $5 million? Take out a line of credit if you need to. Excitement builds. Sales teams will get invigorated, Internal audiences become hyped and your social media gets a healthy shot of anticipation and speculation.
Then comes the genius part. You produce the cheapest spot you can. One that’s sure to get rejected by NFL and network sensors. I suggest an art piece with some brief nudity, perhaps an old lady's sagging breasts or an uncircumcised penis. Not graphic mind you. Taste is key. It doesn't matter though, they will refuse to run it. For good measure, throw in a homeless, mangy animal in front of a politically charged national monument to guarantee there’s no possible way your ad runs. Then get your press machine ready. Prepare your very public response with words like “free market,” “censorship” and “un-American,” and become an advertising hero.
The ad never runs, your client doesn’t have to pay for the media and you get endless social content, become a purveyor of the arts and win the marketing madness that is the Super Bowl. Sorry, I mean the big game. Enjoy your newfound success, because Monday you have an FSI due.