I’m always amazed in the aftermath of the Super Bowl commercials hoopla why no one asks an obvious question: why aren’t some of the advertisers spending huge amounts of money on PR, instead of blowing it on 30-second spots few will remember and fewer still will respond to?
So, while the Bud Light and Sprint Nextel commericals were rightly praised by the likes of Stuart Elliott in the NY Times, why aren’t more pundits suggesting that the less successful marketers find better ways to reach target audiences?
For example, the insurance company spot featuring Fabio in a gondola who, when he re-appears after emerging from a bridge, is suddenly old and wizened, totally missed the mark. First, I can’t even remember the firm’s name. Second, who in god’s name is the ad aimed at? Is the average consumer going to call his or her insurance agent because Fabio suddenly aged sixty years in front of their eyes? As my daughter might say, “I mean, c’mon.”
Or, how about those dreadful GoDaddy commercials? The spots never explain the GoDaddy business model. Instead, they spoof the now two-year-old, highly irrelevant Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction. If GoDaddy wants to let people know it’s THE place to go to create and register a Web site URL, why not spend the money to clearly and consistently communicate that message through editorial content, which is so much more credible than advertising?
Next to word-of-mouth, public relations is the single most effective way to sell a product or service. It boggles this PR guy’s mind to think how many more customers would be buying those Super Bowl advertisers’ products and services if only they’d opted to spend the big bucks on the much more cost effective public relations option. Oh well. Wait ’till next year.