Last week, over 100 million people tuned in for the the largest sporting — and advertising — event of the year. Whether people tuned in for their favorite team, a sense of tradition, the half-time show, or just the commercials, advertisers were tuned in to an avalanche of audience reactions. Today, we’re taking a look back at the conversations inspired by the ads.
Of course, it’s important to first examine audience sentiment and conversation around the event itself, as this contextual information can affect the frame of mind of the audience upon ad exposure. To that end, Spiketrap’s conversation analytics platform processed over 5.6 million messages shared online regarding the game, and found that overall conversation around the event was positive, with a sentiment score of 74.
Notably, Amanda Gorman’s poetry performance before kickoff was well-received, with an overall sentiment score of 79; within this conversation, reactions to a video clip of her performance shared by SportsCenter was exceedingly positive with a reaction sentiment of 97.
Comparatively, reactions to gameplay highlights were neutral, with an average reaction sentiment score of 45. Meanwhile, audience conversations around referee penalty calls were a bit more divided — as one might expect — with an overall sentiment score on the lower end of neutral at 36.
Were advertisers able to fare better than the refs? In short, yes. Let’s dive in. The infographic below provides a visual representation of the top advertiser related conversations on game day. The size of each bubble is indicative of the size of the conversation generated, and its vertical position reflects audience sentiment, with a higher placement reflecting a more positive audience reaction.
Amid the 400+ conversation channels and sources that Spiketrap monitors, the overwhelming majority of advertiser related conversation around the big game took place on Twitter (87%). Overall, fans reacted positively to the ads, with conversations pertaining to event advertisers enjoying a positive sentiment score of 75. Here are a few highlights:
- Toyota’s ad celebrating a Paralympian enjoyed an absolutely phenomenal audience reaction, with conversation sentiment surrounding the spot at 98.
- Cadillac’s ad with Timothee Chalamet and Winona Ryder inspired significant positive conversation (with a reaction score of 76).
- WeatherTech’s “We Never Left” was exceptionally well received, enjoying a reaction sentiment score of 99. Granted, their overall share of the conversation was a bit low (< 1%).
- While Verizon enjoyed a significant share of voice among audience conversations (15%), reaction sentiment was narrowly in the positive range at 61.
- Mount Paramount’s multiple spots helped generate significant audience conversation (claiming 13.7% of the discussion), though reactions were mixed, rendering a reaction sentiment score of 56, which is on the high end of neutral.
- It doesn’t take a 30 second spot to drive conversation, as evidenced by over 17,200 rather positive messages shared in response to Reddit’s 5-second spot, which enjoyed a sentiment score of 88.
- Jeep’s message of a re-united country fell flat for some, resulting in a comparatively low audience sentiment score of 47, albeit still within the neutral range.
- Overall, people enjoyed Oatly’s quirky song, rewarding the brand with feedback that was solidly positive (with a reaction sentiment score of 72).
- Comedy with musical nostalgia was a successful move for Doritos and their “It Wasn’t Me” bit, which generated a respectable share of voice (7.8%) and a positive reaction sentiment of 68.
While game day audience successes are worth celebrating, it is even more important to understand why audiences reacted as they did, as this insight empowers brands to lean into what works — and learn from what didn’t. For additional insight into any of the brands or conversations mentioned above, send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.