Super Bowl ads: Best, worst, and weirdest

Scene from Teleflora.com Super Bowl commercial CBS/Teleflora.com

iStockphoto
The annual competition between the titans of Super Bowl advertising is over. Now it's time to evaluate the game and call out winners and losers.

I rank these ads differently than others. I'm not thinking about how creative, memorable or brand iconic the ads were. My world is sales -- and selling is about behavior. So I looked for the ads that created the greatest potential for creating action. Here's my breakdown:

Best Ads

1. Teleflora.com -- Adriana Lima gives a smoking hot ad with the straight link for buying behavior: Go to the website, buy flowers for Valentine's Day, get rewarded. Ah...if it were only that easy.

2. E-Trade.com -- A Super Bowl darling, these ads are always funny. The great call to action was to move viewers from thinking of E-Trade as an online transaction processor to click/brick financial advisors.

3. GoDaddy.com -- "The Dream Cloud" ad was the only one with a QR Code, allowing immediate access to unique information from a screen scan.

4. Chevy Sonic -- "Stunt Anthem" was a blast to watch, but what makes it one of the best ads for sales is that it draws anyone with a smartphone, tablet or laptop to immediately go see the balance of the stunt videos and possibly capture leads.

5. Pepsi Max -- Clear ask: If you are a Coke Zero drinker, try Pepsi Max; we're better.


CBS This Morning: Stuart Elliot on best/worst ads

Worst Ads

1. Chevy Sonic -- "Joy" with the bugs on the car grill, the ad showed me more grill than car. No clear call to action or post-ad engagement.

2. Pepsi -- Elton John's "King's Court" was pointless, creating no call to action, no "post-ad" viral interest or even water-cooler punch lines. When the best moment is created by Flavor Flav, you have jumped the shark.

3. belVita -- Breakfast cookies for crazy cops. What do you want me to do again?

4. Hyundai -- "Rocky Theme" asked me to believe in the Hyundai brand as a can-do culture. No sense of product, post-ad follow-up or call to action. What do you do with a joke that is eight seconds to punch line, but 30 seconds in length? Restroom break.

5. Coke -- The polar bears again, really? The only behavior this could have gotten was an "Awww" from middle-school girls who missed the last half-dozen times Coca-Cola pulled out this refugee from "Cutesville."

Weirdest Ads

1. Chevy Sonic -- After seeing the music video, I could care less about the car. I am more curious about the band and the song. Is that what you paid for?

2. Cars.com -- The "confidence appendage" is creepy. The only behavior this encouraged was for me to look away.

3. GE -- Was the "Louisville" ad a part of a labor settlement? I guess as a viewer, I feel vaguely happy for the town of Louisville. Is that what they wanted?

4. Dorito's -- "Dog Park" made me say, "Ouch." Wow, dog tricks from people for chips? It's like a Scooby Doo re-run.

5. Toyota Camry -- "Reinvented" was fun, but hard to connect all of the dots, most especially the non-pooping, time-traveling baby.

Honorable Mentions

-- Honda CRV "Matthew's Day Off" creates a multi-generational narrative that is already viral and will stay viral. This covers 18- to 48-year-olds, an amazing demographic to hit in one ad. More people across demographic segments will test-drive Honda CRVs because of this ad.

-- Dorito's "Crash the Super Bowl" created all sorts of viral activity through the contest, submissions and finalists. This is genius because of the community connectivity that they create through the process and the sheer length of the exposure value.

-- Fiat 500 Abarth "Seduction" made me think, "Yowza." There's a dealership in the mall near me and I will be checking out that car. Black and red is now my favorite color combo -- especially in stilettos.

Which ads got you thinking about the approaches you're using in your own company? Post your comments below.

Comments