Here are the top Super Bowl commercials according to Charlotte’s marketing leaders.
Audi – Commander
Tyler Hawes, Partner & Digital Director at MODE
Why? Smart, well written and timely connection to Bowie that appeals to all ages. They were also smart to release it days early and push heavily online and then reinforce with a big first half spot. A beautiful car doesn’t hurt either.
Jim Mountjoy, Director of EYE Creative Lab at BooneOakley
Why? Good story. Wonderful car. Beautifully executed. And the only stars needed to help tell the story were in the night sky above.
Richard McDevitt, Senior Director of Marketing at UNC Charlotte
Why? In a year with a lot of good music choices, the Audi spot is brilliantly targeted for their demographic and brand. Right down to the choice of David Bowie’s “Starman.” Emotionally powerful without pandering or going for cheap laughs, it’s both cool and dignified.
John Boone, Creative Director at Guns & Kittens
Why? It cut through, captivated and connected on a deep emotional level with its ingenious and timely use of Bowie’s “Starman” track. Wow.
John Cavanaugh VP of Strategy at Belgrave Associates
Why? One of the few spots that rose to the big moment this year. Emotional + Bowie = WIN!
Dan Roselli, Co-Founder of Packard Place
Why? It was engaging story telling that made you want to watch for the payoff. A sports car commercial that wasn’t the same old. Besides, the R8 looks totally sweet!
Wiener Stampede – Heinz
Tim Rebich, Principal at Centerfold Agency
Why? No topical humor, quippish banter, cameos or millennial references (like that stupid croptop.co) needed for this spot to be successful. Just a good ol’ fashioned concept and cute wiener dogs. And people in inanimate product costumes – like the olden days.
Theckla Pope, Director of Accounts at Saturday
Why? Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a pack wiener dogs, in wiener costumes? In all seriousness, I’m not sure it was the strongest brand message (I had to think hard to recall if it was for Heinz or Hunts) but the entertainment value was high and it leaves a lot of room for content extensions.
Randy Poindexter, SVP Marketing at Bojangles
Why? I will always have a soft spot in my heart for commercials with wiener dogs. And this commercial makes me want to go eat a Carolina Slaw Dog with chili, onions and some Heinz mustard and ketchup 🙂
James Ward, SVP / Executive Creative Director at Saturday
Why? Can’t believe I am voting for a dog commercial, but running wiener dogs, man. In slo-mo. #art
#Puppymonkeybaby – Mountain Dew
Rachel Martin, Design Director at Rachel Martin Design LLC
Why? It’s so wrong but so right. Fits Mt Dew, spot on being downright disturbing and yet hysterically funny. The only commercial I laughed out loud at.
David Oakley, Creative Director at BooneOakley
Why? The guy that wrote it used to work it BooneOakley. Then we spun him off the Mtn Dew world.
Wade Leaphart, Chief Revenue Officer at Charlotte Independence
Why? Memorable. Ridiculous.
Ultrasound – Doritos
Mark Smith, VP of Marketing at Charlotte Knights
Why? This commercial tied the product into a situation that was unexpected in a very funny and memorable way. All ages I was with laughed out loud and talked about this commercial later.
Garrett Tichy, Partner at Ready at 7
Why? Birth by Doritos? A classic unchanged product line staying relevant by pushing the line with just the right amount of humor. I laughed hard.
Tim Baier, Co-founder of Spiracle Media
Why? I still love the idea that Doritos does a contest to find the best creative commercials in the land. It was the last year for this commercial contest and unfortunately as the game turned sour I paid less attention to the commercials. Proud to live in #CLT.
#GiveADamn – Budweiser
Chris Halligan, VP Sales & Marketing at Payzer
Why? Original, compelling execution of an important (but well worn) message.
Bill Norton, VP of Marketing at United Way of Central Carolinas
Why? Fittingly, the most important commercial was the most powerful as well. Most tried way too hard and flopped – only during Super Bowl excess could an ad with David Lee Roth come off as restrained and classy – well-done, Acura. Honorable mentions: Jeep, T-Mobile, Skittles.
Leighton Smith, Media Buyer & Consultant
Why? Great message and great time placement. Helen was a brilliant choice.
Hyundai – First Date
Matt Ferguson, Managing Partner at Eric Mower + Associates
Why? Being a dad of four daughters, I could identify. Plus, Kevin Hart makes just about anything funny. And it reinforced the selling point about Hyundai’s car-tracking technology. Hyundai elevated its brand to the level of friendship with this spot. Here’s our agency’s Super Bowl commercial tracker.
Emily Crow, Manager at Bank of America
Why? Original, relatable and made me laugh.
Colleen Brannan, President at BRANSTORM PR & Marketing
Why? Kevin Hart’s First Date did some heavy lifting in 30 sec. With humor and star power, it showcased the Hyundai Genesis, its Carfinder feature and a relatable situation for protective Dads everywhere.
Barry Wilson, President at Planet Central
Why? What a great way to highlight something as mundane as car-finder technology. Through the comedic antics of Kevin Hart, Hyundai leverages a father’s worst nightmare – his daughter being taken out on date that includes a stop at a make-out spot. With the car-finder, Kevin is able to stalk them to keep the guy in check.
Portraits – Jeep
Erika Carney, CMO at Skookum
Why? I loved the portraits of iconic moments in the company’s history and the simple, yet powerful message: “We don’t make Jeep, you do.” The imagery and supporting narrative captured the essence of the brand really well. There’s no questioning the type of person they’re targeting.
Blair Primis, VP Marketing at OrthoCarolina
Why? Excellent combined use of photography in both the human face close ups as well as the scenes of Jeep throughout the years. Inspiring music and trumpeting of Americana.
#defylabels – Mini
Buffy McCoy Kelly, President & Creative Director at Tattoo Projects
Why? This spot stuck to the truth. It was thoughtful and authentic, and packed a big message in a simple and direct way.
Wes Nguyen, President, Charlotte American Marketing Association
Why? Defy Labels campaign masterfully integrated a storyline of how their celebrity endorsers overcame social judgement as they showcase an authentic relationship with the brand. Consumers have a reason to rethink and question labels about the car and even about other aspects of their lives.
The Longest Chase – Prius
Chad Brophy, Associate Creative Director at Tattoo Projects
Why? Perfectly executed, wildly entertaining Super Bowl commercial that powerfully communicated Prius’ competitive advantage.
Nick Fry, Creative Director at Orbital Socket
Why? It’s refreshing and powerful when brands are self-aware. This ad is clever and challenges market perception while keeping you smiling.
The Portrait – Skittles
Lee James, Chief Creative Officer at Mythic
Why? The only spot that made me laugh this year. In terms of effectiveness, I turned the water off while I brushed my teeth – thanks to Colgate. Maybe I’ll switch brands. Wish there had been a little more Bowie in Audi.
#AvocadoesinSpace – Avocados from Mexico
Cordelia Anderson, Director of Marketing & Communications at Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Why? In grand super bowl commercial fashion, the ad had nothing to do with the product, but it was silly and memorable and had a random cameo (Scott Baio). And, unlike many others, I actually remembered what the ad was for. VERY honorable mentions to the PSAs that raised awareness about domestic abuse, drunk driving and water scarcity.
There’s a New Money in Town – PayPal
Marty Kelso, Creative Director at Kelso Communications
Why? Unchecked overproduction ruled the night, allowing simple to stand out. A killer beat and razor-sharp editing of old and new footage culminated in a financial services message with a surprisingly emotional rallying cry: New money is all of us.
Marilyn – Snickers
Jay Joyce, President at The Idea People
Why? Snickers is genius in placing the comedy with famous TV or movie icons. It started with Betty White and the sky is the limit!
Ryanville – Hyundai
Molly Carroll, Director of Marketing at Trinity Partners
Why? Brought two of my favorites together: Salt N Pepa and Ryan Reynolds. It’s both clever and silly, with a memorable payoff that actually highlights the product’s benefits.
#Pokemon20 – Pokemon
Jean Namkung, Marketing Manager at Uber
Why: The parallel between sports competition and Pokemon, set over an inspiring storyline told in 60 seconds, makes this so nostalgic and universally appealing!
#BaldwinBowl – Amazon
Matt Olin, Copywriter at Matt Olin Creative & Leader of Creative Mornings
Why? Everything you want in a Super Bowl ad.
Drop the Balls – T-Mobile
Alex Dowlin, Director of Marketing at MetLife
Why? Ability to have Steve Harvey to laugh at himself, while using the joke to debunk Verizon’s commercial we’ve seen hundreds of times. Now, if Verizon shows that, we’ll think of T-Mobile (and a disappointed Columbian). Brilliant. Go Panthers in 2016!
A New Truck to Love – Honda
Amy Jolly, Assistant Director of Alumni Affairs at UNC Charlotte
Why? Who doesn’t love Queen and cute animals… Even if I have no use for the truck. Also, I missed a lot of the ads taking care of a kid but this one quickly caught my attention back to the TV.
Football is Family – NFL
Lauren Woodruff, Charlotte Market Manager at Bank of America
Why? Really? That was both amazing and uncomfortable. Loved it.
Coke Mini (Hulk vs Ant-Man) – Coca Cola
Jim Bailey, President at Red Moon Marketing
Why? Great spot melding the popular Marvel franchise and big refreshment with a smaller package. The key take away was regardless of whether you have a big thirst (Hulk) or small one (Ant Man)- Coke quenches then all.
Pass it on Sweepstakes – Esurance
Elliott Antal, Sr. Digital Marketing Manager at The South Agency
Why? The commercial took an interesting approach to a Twitter hashtag, instead of an afterthought added to a commercial the contest teased the chance to win up to $1 million in exchange for tweeting #Esurancesweepstakes. According to data from tech company Spredfast, the brand’s Twitter mentions spiked at 6:35 p.m. when the commercial aired, generating 9,000 tweets per minute. The hashtag also trended nationally on Twitter for roughly 15 minutes. #winning
Big Game with Christopher Walken – Kia
Ben Simon, VP at Windsor Jewelers
Why? Love the “beige socks” being a sign of lame, same old same old boringness and the Kia Optima being like a fresh, fun pair of colorful socks.
Robby Thomas, Director of Marketing at WBTV
Pick: #WBTVandMe -WBTV
Why? Biased? Maybe. The spot nails our brand of “on your side” by showcasing that our brand is really at its best when you’re on ours. This was a collaboration that featured Thomas Davis’ Defending Dreams Foundation along with several other local organizations. Here’s the story behind it. The Heinz weiner dogs was pretty cute, too.