The Best and Worst of the 2013 Super Bowl Ads

Super Bowl Sunday has become more than just a day of (great) football and partying with family and friends. To businesses, it’s a $3.8 million investment in a 30-second spot and hoping that somehow the message will be delivered in the midst of the clutter.  To consumers, it’s about which ad is the funniest or most memorable.

To Twin Cities marketers, this year it was about watching the ads, taking mental notes, analyzing every aspect of the spot, and talking about them at an American Marketing Association Post-game Roast days after with executives from the Cities’ top marketing firms—Tina Wilcox, CEO and creative director from Black; Eric Husband, executive creative director at Cole + McVoy; Michael Hart, founder and creative director of Mono; and Dan Armstrong, a freelance copy writer; moderated by Bill Kruse, executive producer at Pixel Farm. The event was appropriately held at the Vikings' Gridiron Club at the Metrodome.

Without further ado, here are the top and bottom three from the panel and their reasons.


Dodge Ram - Farmer (Posted above.)

  • Most effective and stood out in the midst with its “quiet cry”
  • Great writing, people clung to every word (thanks to Paul Harvey)
  • Striking and moved the country

Audi - Prom

  • Great editing and execution
  • From brand cache stand point, opened up Audi  (vs. Mercedes where price was the selling point)
  • Lacking in the “surprise” factor but overall well produced

Taco Bell - Viva Young

  • Quintessential Super Bowl ad with the surprise factor
  • Craft and execution was well done
  • Missed the boat on casting (why not cast Betty White, the spokeswoman of elderly sass?)

Bottom Three

Budweiser Black Crown - Celebration

  • Missed the target market

 Speed Stick - Unattended Laundry

  • Wait… what was this about again?

 Skechers - Man vs Cheetah

  • Have we seen this before… oh yes, Mountain Dew did that.

There were many other discussions surrounding the Super Bowl ads last night: What was the general impression of the Super Bowl ads this year? Is it really worth the money? Will companies continue to do Super Bowl ads? Is connecting the ads to the brand important?

The panelists and the audience had a grand time talking about these topics, and if you missed it… well, I guess you’ll just have to attend the next MN AMA event to not miss any more of great discussions!