It was the Super Bowl of Super Bowl ads. Last Tuesday, the Pittsburgh Advertising Federation and the American Marketing Association Pittsburgh sponsored their annual Super Bowl ad review, where participants selected the best Super Bowl commercials through live voting.
About 100 people attended the session, where the standing room-only crowd was treated to a Chik-fil-A buffet before a panel of experts gave their insightful opinions on their 16 top ads. The ads were paired off to form brackets and the live voting started, with participants voting via landing page and text. Bai’s commercial with Justin Timberlake and Christopher Walken ultimately swept the awards, winning the title as Best of the Super Bowl with their take on N*Sync’s “Bye Bye Bye.”
Kristina Gleeson, Content Specialist at Pipitone Group, said that Bai wasn’t even the funniest commercial. “The Mr. Clean ad was funnier. But it was the strategy of the commercial that led it to win, that it was successful in creating so much brand awareness.” Leave it to a room of marketers and advertisers to focus on brand awareness, and not the laugh factor, when ranking commercials created by other marketers and advertisers.
The Bai “Gentlemen” ad, created by In-house, made a lasting impression on the panel of experts, which included Shannon Baker (Gatesman), Lindsey Smith (Smith Brothers Agency) and Paige Beale (Point Park University). In about 30 seconds, the ad accomplishes three things: 1) introduces a brand to many who, at least in this audience, had no prior brand recognition; 2) shows how to pronounce their brand name in a way you won’t soon forget; and 3) entertains through the unequivocal star power of Justin Timberlake and Christopher Walken.
Kristina said she had a great time and she’d definitely attend again next year, as it was quite a unique experience. “If you want critique from people who’ve produced ads, know the industry, and can look at them from a strategic standpoint, I don’t know where else you could find that.”