“We’re trying to ultimately connect this effort to sales growth. If we’re not protecting more people with the dollars to spread the word, then it wasn’t a good investment.”

An average 30-second Super Bowl ad in 2019 costs about 5.2 million dollars, but for many brands, that cost is worth the massive exposure at the annual “Oscars of advertising.” CMO Spotlight hosts Catharine Hays and Jenny Rooney went in-depth with Melina Engel (SimpliSafe) and Dean Evans (Hyundai Motor America) on campaign strategies before Super Bowl LIII, sharing newcomer and veteran perspectives on how to get the most value out of a moment’s spotlight.

Interview Highlights

On grabbing the right moment

“The really critical thing for me was to look at this buy as squarely a targeted buy. We didn’t pull the trigger until the research about who watches the Super Bowl and the research about who purchases SimpliSafe pointed in the direction of saying: ‘Okay, there is no other way for me to reach this number of my target consumers.’ If the audience wasn’t squarely in my target consumer group I wouldn’t have done it. […] We wanted to give the spot an unveiling moment on the big screen and not a spot that all the audience had already seen four times. It’s an awesome moment. We know that this means that some of the media wasn’t going to be there ahead of time, but for us, [it was] the opportunity to connect with more Americans than actually vote in a presidential election.” — Melina Engel, CMO, SimpliSafe

On returning to the Super Bowl each year

“We’re going to be there, I think, for the foreseeable future. This is the biggest day of the year when people are actually tuning in to your message. I know it’s pricey, but we’re a big company too, and there are other companies with the financial sensibility to do something like this. I just think that from a marketing standpoint, all year long we are fighting with multi-channels and all this kind of distraction in this day. People are pulling out the chips and salsa and cracking the beers so they can watch not just the game, but the content between it, so that’s why we have no problem every year to invest in it, especially with our track record.” — Dean Evans, CMO, Hyundai Motor America

On tackling big issues

“[CMOs are] talking about things like diversity and inclusion, sustainability, women’s leadership. These are big issues related to businesses in general, organizations, culture, and society. And I think that CMOs are taking the lead in a lot of those conversations because they have the platform, they have the visibility in companies, they own the voice of the customers, so they feel very much like they have that permission to represent the people who their products are serving.” — Jenny Rooney, Editor, CMO Network at Forbes

On maximizing the experience across platforms

“We’re starting with a social media push to activate our base. There are a lot of different issues brought up in the ad that are good little bites of conversation we can have with our community, and after the ad we are expecting to release teasers, gifts, videos, and continue the conversation more in depth.” — Melina Engel

“We’re still going to be leaning in on how you modernize media channels today, and more importantly, the customer experience. It’s not just a fad; it really is a lifestyle. I think we’re going to continue to see more development there and competitive advantages emerging and more profitability from the companies that can do that because it is a competitive advantage.” — Dean Evans

Watch the ads

Posted: February 4, 2019

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