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Critics: Super Bowl advertisers need back-to-basics approach

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Albany/HV: Critics: Super Bowl advertisers need back-to-basics approach
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If you spent $4 million in 30 seconds, you'd probably hope for a pretty good return on your money. But a recent study says only one in five Super Bowl commercials actually sell the product they're advertising.

While there were a few favorites, many found this year's ads uninspiring.

"I thought it was good, not great. I don't think the ads were as bad as the Broncos. But I don't think they were as good as the Seahawks," said Kevin Tripodi, Eric Mower & Associates' creative director.

With such a high rate for a 30-second spot, advertisers need to be creative.

"Chiwawas breeding with Dobermans to create a Doberwawa or whatever, that was really funny. It was really memorable. I think it was for Audi. I'm not sure. There's nothing in my mind that I will ever associate that commercial with Audi," said Robert Thompson, a Syracuse University popular culture and television professor.

"Radio Shack was not only my favorite commercial of the Super Bowl, I think it may be the most effective because in the end, it's one thing to make a wonderful 60-second or a 30-second film. It's another thing to make a wonderful 60-second or a 30-second commercial. They're two different things. You can make the most beautiful minute long film in the world and if it doesn't move product off the shelf, it's not a good commercial. It's a good movie," Thompson said.

And making a good commercial is no longer enough. The rise of social media has fundamentally changed Super Bowl Marketing.

"JC Penny's drunk tweets are a perfect example. You've got a coordinated, sort of battle plan, the commercial goes on, and then you put your hashtags on there and then you manipulate those that are following you around," said Thompson.

While the explosion of social media, companies are looking at the number of views and shares of their commercials, and it may not be lead to the end game of maximizing sales.

Thompson said what advertisers might need to hook customers is to take a step back to more traditional, product-focused marketing like the jingle of "My bologna has first name..." or "The best part of waking up is Folgers in your cup."

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