Let’s face it--there’s as much hype around Super Bowl ads as there is the actual game. This year, a 30 second Super Bowl ad will cost $5 million, up from $4.5 million in 2015.
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In 2015, some of the dominant themes included the use of animals, nostalgia, and celebrities in the commercials. Budweiser (BUD) easily had the most memorable ad featuring a puppy that goes missing from its owner, while the owner searches desperately for Fido. Ultimately, Budweiser’s famous Clydesdale horses rescue the dog and bring it home. Jarrod Moses, CEO of United Entertainment Group, says the highest rated Super Bowl commercials feature animals or babies. “The nostalgia of the Clydesdales for the older generation, coupled with the appeal of a puppy for the younger generation, was the perfect storm of consumer emotion.”
Bud Light’s ad featured a group of 20 something guys looking for a fun night out, who wind up in the middle of a real-life Pac-Man game. “Bud is always expected to raise the bar during this time. When you ask people which ads you’re looking forward to the most, people generally say Bud Light,” says Moses.
And using celebrities is often a strong tactic in reaching Millennials, the most coveted demographic in advertising, according to Moses. In 2015, T-Mobile’s (TMUS) Super Bowl ad featured the famous Kim Kardashian, a reality and social media staple among Millennial audiences.
Moses predicts that comedy and celebrities will dominate the ads this year. Bud Light has previewed its ad for this year’s Super Bowl featuring comedians Amy Schumer and Seth Rogen preparing to attend a Bud Light party. The duo are not only a powerful comedic pairing, but they’re also popular among Millennials.
E-commerce giant Amazon (AMZN) is debuting its first-ever Super Bowl ad this year. Amazon’s ad features Alec Baldwin, Miami Dolphins legend Dan Marino and Amazon’s personal assistant Alexa. “Amazon needs to make a huge statement in this cluttered environment in how they are a part of your life,” says Moses.
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One theme that likely won’t break into the ad arena is anything to do with politics. Moses predicts that there might be some patriotic themes given that America is in an election year, but no company will take a political stance.