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Feb 3, 2009 by     Comments Off on     Posted under: Ben Cecil, KXAN, Matt Hyatt, Mike Henry, Natalia Vasquez, Shelly Leslie, Super Bowl commercials

Now calling Austin, Texas home is NATALIA VASQUEZ. She’s the new Marketing Producer for Lin TV ‘s NBC affiliate KXAN in the Lone Star State capital. Austin is the best, just in case anybody asks you. Natalie made the transition from WVIT, NBC30 in Hartford – New Haven. Her background is fascinating – she was raised in both Mexico City and New England, and is fluent in English and Spanish. Now, she’s closer to her parents, who live in DF, which is how they refer to Mexico City. Well Dunne! Natalia. Thanks to Brand Manager BEN CECIL for the heads up (and all the enthusiastic words)

Lots of folks have weighed in on the Super Bowl spots, but people who MAKE spots (and have for quite some time) look at them in different eyes. Here’s more from the promo pros.

From MIKE HENRY, Marketing Director and Digital Channel Director at Newport’s CBS affil KGPE in Fresno, CA:
For the first time in a long time the game was actually better than the commercials! For certain, there were no hall of fame spots to rival the Ridley Scott “1984” Apple commercial or the original “Mean Joe” Coke commercial. In fact, the current incarnation of the “Mean Joe” spot for Coke Zero was a real mess. For an older generation who remembers the original it was an out of tune parody that made no sense. For a newer generation that never saw the original the parody still made no sense…pretty much an inside joke. I don’t know who they were talking to with this spot.

For my money, the best ads went to the companies that have always understood the blocking and tackling of brand building. Pepsi hit the spot with its “forever young” spot. A good cross-generational spot for a TV event that delivers a cross generational audience. They should have run it more than once. Right after Bruce Springsteen would have been great placement.

Budweiser continued its long running tradition of inspired anthropomorphism with the Clydesdales. The commercial where a younger Clydesdale thinks about its grandfather and its heritage is pure Budweiser branding at its best. The spot where the horse runs off to the Fellini circus…not so much. Still, they remain fetlocks taller than the Budweiser frogs, who won a lot of trendy ad awards but didn’t sell any beer.

First, I have to say I really miss the polar bears from the old Coke commercials. Nonetheless, Coke came back to redeem itself with the runaway Coke bottle commercial featuring the “Peter and The Wolf” music. However, I’m not convinced the new “open happiness” campaign means a damn thing to the everyday cola drinker. Drinking cola should not be a Zen koan.

On the auto front, the clear winner was Hyundai. Each spot was a straightforward message that reinforced its claim of quality and served as an understated challenge to Mercedes-Benz, Lexus and other competition. Having Jeff Bridges as the announcer was a real touch of “I’m so hip I don’t have to sell you anything” class.

On the other hand, Audi had half a great commercial. They spent a ton of money on a spot that looked like a frat boy in an Armani suit with its “Transporter” inspired ad. The entire first half of the spot left me wondering what the hell they were advertising. The commercial focused more on the gimmick than it did on the attributes of the product. Again, I have to wonder who they were talking to.

From SHELLY LESLIE, Creative Services Director of legendary WRAL in Raleigh, NC:
I had a very different reaction to the careerbuilder.com spots. I think they missed a huge opportunity trying to be funny. Don’t they know we’re in the biggest job loss since the great depression? So they produce an ad about hating your job? Bad, bad marketing decision IMHO. They had an opportunity to really elevate their brand to the biggest out of work audience in modern times and they missed it.

My personal favorites: Mr & Mrs Potato Head and NBC’s LMAO. I saw what seemed like 5 different ads for “Chuck” and I still couldn’t tell you when it airs. Hmmmmm, creativity over tune in?

From MATT HYATT, Creative Services Director at Meredith’s CBS affiliate in Phoenix:
What a game! For a guy who grew up in St. Louis, and now lives in Phoenix, it was a crazy rollercoaster ride.

I was disappointed with this year’s commercials. That said I would have to say the Alec Baldwin Hulu ad was my favorite. Truth in advertising is important. Alec Baldwin’s shtick works in the ad and he sells it nicely. Who wouldn’t want more cerebral gelatinizing shows anytime, anywhere for free! Hey, that’s how Hulu rolls.

Honorable mention…Budweiser Office Meetings. I had to give Bud a quick mention for giving us a laugh at the current economic times. I know my budget meetings would be more palatable with Bud Light. I might even get some of my outside media dollars back!

“We live in a world of breathtaking material plenty. That has freed hundreds of millions of people from the day-to-day struggles, and liberated us to pursue more significant desires: purpose, transcendence, and spiritual fulfillment.” ~ Daniel H. Pink

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