Last night’s Super Bowl commercials made me wonder about what commercials are for. It’s always been my thought that commercials are to make you buy something, inform you about a product, improve the image of a brand, or give you a call to action. The incredibly expensive commercials yesterday mostly made me…do nothing. I had no desire to look up information about a product, I certainly had no desire to buy anything (even the Doritos commercial didn’t make me wish we had a bag at home). I did watch the car commercial with Jerry Seinfeld and think that I wanted to catch the episodes of his old show with the Soup guy…but I don’t think that was the purpose of the spot. I did watch the Go Daddy spot and wonder where Danica was going to race this year…is it NASCAR or Indy? There were commercials that were powerful (GE) and there were commercials that were just plain silly (end of the world car commercial). There were commercials that were depressing (Clint Eastwood car commercial which reminded me that most of the problems in Detroit were as a result of bad decision-making by auto executives) and there were plenty of beer and soft drink commercials. But today, in the clear light of morning, there should also be some Boards of Directors that ask some very pointed questions of CEOs and Chief Marketing Officers about why in the world they dropped $3.5 million dollars (plus the creative cost) for those spots?
Here’s what the NY Times says about the commercials.