It didn’t take the metrics for this dog lover to spot the #1 Superbowl commercial for 2015 – Budweiser’s story of the lost puppy. My students will tell you that, in addition to teaching from the Arens and Weigold text, and tips from the advertising red carpets like Bond & Kirshenbaum, I have one simple rule for great ads. Tell stories. And the Budweiser ad did just that (of course they told a beautifully filmed compelling story with an adorable puppy and majestic horses, but still, it was the core story that captured viewers’ hearts).
Metrics did verify what my heartstrings told me. According to iSpot.tv’s metrics (which were live during the broadcast) the Budweiser ad captured more than 12% of the online activity, more than 4 million requested online views, more than 300,000 social actions (retweets, etc.). The next top ads? Once again they shared stories –Always’ Like a Girl ad (the story of the sad truth of young girls plummeting confidence) and McDonald’s Pay with Lovin ad (the story of family love).
Creativity does not start with metrics, but wise creatives study the metrics. In all of our pre-testing and posting of advertising, no studies test on the scale that Superbowl metrics can offer us; and no studies compare to the communal environment of ad watching created by the Superbowl. In addition, it is rare that a market segment is as broad as a Superbowl audience – with such variance in age, ethnicity, lifestyle, etc. But the beautiful takeaway from the Superbowl metrics is, in spite of our differences, our common humanity calls us to share and listen to stories on the universal themes of friendship, love and care for each other. And now, with big data, metrics have affirmed our humanity.