The benefits of celebrity endorsement for Super Bowl adverts

February 27, 2018


This year’s National Football League (NFL) Super Bowl LII took place earlier this week at the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota and the Philadelphia Eagles were victorious on the pitch after defeating Super Bowl champions New England Patriots. Many brands had partnership and sponsorships deals this year and reaped the results of the global brand exposure. With the event being America's biggest annual sporting event, it  reportedly drew in 103.4 million viewers. Needless to say, that figures this high, are a sponsor’s dream, so we’ve taken a look at the brands that were triumphant during this year’s ad breaks.

During the commercial breaks, many brands were featured from Pepsi, Coca-Cola, T-Mobile, Sketchers, and Doritos, to car manufacturers Kia, Jeep, Toyota, and Hyundai. With the Super Bowl deemed the most coveted ad slot in the world, the average 30-second commercial can be in excess of $5 million (£3.5 million).

During the Halftime Show, which Justin Timberlake headlined, brands went back to celebrity cameos and funny tag lines for their ads this year following last year’s adverts political message ads last year after Donald Trumps’ inauguration.

Nike struck a deal with the man of the night, Justin Timberlake, and the collaboration proved to be highly successful. Prior to taking the stage, the pop star posted a “2-minute warning” on Instagram, with a not so subtle message focusing on a pair of Air Jordan 3’s, which he would be wearing for the 15-minute show. Following the Halftime Show, Nike’s SNKRS app opened a sale for the new “JTHs,” which promptly sold out.


(Source:, Pepsi and Coca-Cola went head to head with Pepsi flaunting its heritage and Coca-Cola rebranding its Diet Coke to millennials.

Just hours after the winners were crowned, Twitter announced that Pepsi won the first ever #BrandBowl. The soft drink brand sponsored the Halftime Show and took the title as the most tweeted-about brand in Twitter’s inaugural competition.

This year Doritos scored a metaphorical touchdown with its Peter Dinklage Doritos v Mountain Dew commercial, followed by the CEO of Doritos’ parent company, PepsiCo, revealing that special ‘lady Doritos’ for women may be produced, but these rumours have since been shut down by the brand. This caused a lot of social media attention and is a prime way to keep your brand in the minds of Super Bowl fans. Although maybe not for the right reasons, considering we recently celebrated 100 years since women won the right to vote.

Doritos and Mountain Dew generated the most tweets per minute due to their joint ad, and T-Mobile took the prize for the most tweeted-about brand in the technology and telecommunications category.

Budweiser promoted its charity work – providing water for natural disaster areas and were deemed the most tweeted-about brand in the alcoholic beverages category. Ideal for the beer brand to showcase their goodwill work.

American laundry detergent brand Tide received some much-needed positive promotion due to its Super Bowl advert following several weeks of unfortunate headlines around the youth culture’s biggest obsession since the fidget-spinner: eating Tide Pods.

The four creative Super Bowl spots, featuring Stranger Things' actor David Harbour, forced viewers to question whether subsequent ads were a Tide ad or not. This psychological trick brilliantly kept the brand top of mind throughout the entire game. This is a great way to turn brand perception around.

M&M’s took their Super Bowl ad, which featured actor Danny DeVito, to the next level by following it with 6-second and 15-second spots, titled "M&M's Again". These continued the story arc where the red M&M's "spokescandy" complains about people trying to eat him and makes a wish on a penny to become human.

The brand built excitement for its campaign after a three-year break from the Super Bowl with teaser ads, which are a great way to tap into the millennial market (as attention spans for ads are around five or six seconds). The brand also brand set up a Twitter-activated vending machine in Minneapolis ahead of the game, where visitors could view the brand's commercial and sample candies. This is a great way to make the absolute most out of the Super Bowl opportunity, whilst actively engaging with your audience in various ways.


(Source: brands also benefited from the show and reaped the financial rewards of Super Bowl sponsorship. Brands saw their logo on volunteer t-shirts and promotional literature, such as visitor guides and banners that decorated the city. The exposure is beneficial to these brands as the eyes of the world are on the city and it provides companies with the chance to fulfil community relations goals.

With the chance for global brand awareness and a boost to the brand’s credibility, and the plethora of advertising and marketing opportunities, why wouldn’t you sponsor next year’s Super Bowl? It could also form the basis of a long-standing partnership with the annual sporting event, and you can’t put a price tag on that. Research has shown that Super Bowl advertisers see heightened sales and social media engagement in the months following the game. Just make sure the relationship is a natural one as the Turkish Airlines sponsorship deal appeared to befuddle fans, and this is never a good shout for your brand.

For more information on how ECHO could help you with corporate sponsorship opportunities, get in touch at or for all the latest news you can follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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