Recently, we covered the rising phenomenon of people utilizing Internet-connected devices while they watch television. This new trend in consumer behavior is one of the hottest topics and focal points for both broadcasters and advertisers. It is only fitting that the 2012 Super Bowl will be the biggest showcase to date for social television and companion experiences with unprecedented scale. Historically, advertisements during the game have become almost an event in themselves. To enhance the traditional “water cooler” ad chatter, brands are embracing these new second screen platforms like never before. With 30-second ads that cost in the range of $3-4 million, being able to extend conversations and stimulate dialogue in the social space brings a tremendous amount of increased value for the ad purchaser.
It is reported that around 1/3 of all Super Bowl ads this year will be Shazam-capable to deliver viewers into a digital mobile experience, as compared to only a single ad during the game last year. These rich companion experiences will be key, but the real battle over Super Bowl ad supremacy will be waged over Twitter. According to Bluefin Labs, the AFC Championship game between the Patriots and Ravens generated over 2 million social media comments; that’s more than the number of comments made during the Super Bowl last year. Advertisers are turning to sponsored tweets, hashtags featured in ads, and the sharing of comments and check-ins within apps to capitalize on the social buzz generated during the event. You can be assured that the big game this year will break every record previously set for social chatter of a television broadcast.
A recent survey by Venables Bell & Partners found that over 50% of Americans plan to engage with a communication tool during the Super Bowl. This, coupled with the increased amount of social behavior users who are already exhibiting themselves during television broadcasts, is the audience these brands are targeting. Chevrolet, who will be running several ads, has taken their branded interaction with Super Bowl viewers to a new level. Fans can download theChevy Game Time app to their smartphone or tablet to create a second screen experience during the game. This app will feature trivia and polls, as well as the opportunity for fans to win thousands of prizes, including 20 Chevy vehicles. NBC is even looking to create their own buzz with a Get Glue Super Bowl XLVI sticker series, and Pepsi is joining in to sponsor the campaign by giving fans who unlock stickers access to exclusive content and BOGO product coupons. Hyundai will be utilizing the Miso platform to deliver branded sideshow content to enhance the viewing experience. Both Subway and GoDaddy have teamed up with PrePlay Sports to sponsor an app that lets fans predict plays as they watch the game. Coca-Cola is going all out with their polar bears by creating alternate viewing experiences, and they will even decide in real time which version of their ad to run based on the score of the game. Both the NFL and NBC are trying to capitalize on alternate viewing devices for those who choose to watch the game without the use of a traditional television. The NFL is offering their own official app for Verizon customers and NBC will stream the game live on the Web.
The 2012 Super Bowl is primed to kick off this year and accelerate these new emerging trends into the daily viewing habits of consumers by putting them on the center stage. If anyone out there is a non-believer of the power of social TV and the second screen, then their perceptions are sure to change after February 5th.
This originally appeared on the Engauge Blog February 2, 2012