Superbowl Commercial Impact Without The Budget

They say “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em”. We say “at least learn from them”.

So if you, like us, are one of the millions of businesses that could not afford to run a $3 million, 30 second commercial during the Big Game this year, we’ve found some lessons from the commercial we feel was the most successful. Whether you agree or disagree, please leave your comments at the end.

If you didn’t see the Chrysler/Eminem commercial during Sunday’s game, watch the clip below and then continue reading.

Lesson 1: Be Honest & Upfront

Let’s face it: Chrysler and Detroit have both been down on their luck for a long time. We’ve all seen the numbers, we’ve heard the stories, and we’ve watched the newscasts. So rather than ignore the truth and try to sidestep around the problem, in this commercial they’ve decided to attack it head-on. And it is brilliant.

With lines like “what does a town that’s been to Hell and back know about luxury?”, and “it’s the hottest fires that make the hardest steel”, they are acknowledging the current situation, and providing legitimate arguments to some very difficult perceptions. It’s not that you should buy a car because you solely want to support Detroit, it’s that you should buy one because you believe that the grittiness and drive of the people in this city have created the best car you can buy. And that’s where facing the hard truth, and turning it on it’s head, will result in sales.

Action Step for Businesses: Take a hard look at your company, service/product, and current situation. What are the negative aspects that your customers already have in their minds? What are their questions and concerns? Address these head-on, explain the reality of the situation, and show them how these potential conflicts are your biggest opportunities and sources of strength.

Lesson 2: Tell Your Story & Make An Impact

This is not the fist-pumping, world-ignoring, ‘America-is-the-greatest-just-because-it-is’ rant we’ve heard in the past (we’re looking at you, Glenn Beck). And it’s not a blanket statement, like ‘the heartbeat of America’, that sounds good but doesn’t really tell you anything. By filming the spot like a movie, slowly telling the story without clutter or noise, and bringing the viewer into the scene, they have made an impact that no jingle, tagline, or flashy message could have made.

Action Step for Businesses: Once you’ve addressed the concerns, hire a great copywriter to tell your story. There is a certain skill to portraying a message that will move people forward, and a professional copywriter will be worth their weight in gold.

Lesson 3: Speak To Your Audience

This is where they really nailed it.

At the end of the day, a great story can make an impact, draw people in, and change the way they think. But how do you turn that into sales, especially when the audience you’re trying to reach is not the one who may be the most interested in your story?

By bringing in Eminem to close the commercial, Chrysler hit a home run. To those that know him (ie: the younger demographic that Chrysler is hoping will become the customer base to move them forward), Eminem is Detroit. So the match couldn’t be more perfect. He portrays the grittiness, brutal honesty, and comeback-making persona that defines this ad. And he makes the Chrysler seem cool just by association. They don’t have to say it’s cool. They show it. And that’s where this story becomes a marketing success.

Action Step for Businesses: Once you’ve mastered the above two steps, find a compelling way to show your prospective market. If they’re looking for something cool or high-tech, use a flashy, fast, high-tech medium to bring it to them. Don’t place a static ad in print just because that’s the easiest way you can think to reach your audience, it won’t work. If you need ideas on how to relate to your audience and create the marketing tools that will appeal to them, contact us for more information.