This Ad Won The Super Bowl w/ Whit Norrad

By: Michael Cirillo   |   17 Feb 2022
Michael Cirillo and Whit Norrad

There's one time of year that we actually look forward to commercials, and that time of year is Super Bowl Sunday. It's a time when advertisers pull out all the stops and put forward their best effort to create a 30 second spot that captures attention, makes viewers feel something, and hope that whatever it is that they're promoting sticks. 

We got a lot of what we expected from the commercials. The usual celebrity placements, cinematic flair, humor, and of course car commercials. There was a clear winner of the Super Bowl commercial this year, though, and their pitch was brilliant and simple. 

What we discuss in this episode:

  • Amidst what is now considered the status quo, coinbase dropped a QR code ad that peaked curiosity, engaged viewers in an activity, and allowed them to track immediate attribution while bypassing Apple and other companies who are blocking 3rd party pixels. 
  • Their ad, which featured a bouncing QR code which mimicked the old DVD symbol appeared between the usual ad placements. It peaked curiosity because there were no logos on the screen. Just a bouncing QR code. 
  • From curiousity came activity. We jumped out of our seats, opened our camera apps, and followed the code across the screen to try and scan it. 
  • Once scanned, we learned it was the company Coinbase, promoting their app. But instead of landing you on their app store placements, they brought you to a landing page where you likely picked up a tracking pixel. 
  • This simple ad moved Coinbase from the top 100 apps on the app store to the #2 placement, which eventually caused the app to crash. 
  • Dealers can advertise with this same level of simplicity. Think about it: Dealers spend most of their ad budgets advertising the one thing consumers already know about them. Then, they try and talk about how they are different which rarely sticks because they keep spending money to blend in and be the same as other automotive retailers.
  • With some simple out-of-the-box thinking dealers could have a more memorable impact in the community with more engaging advertising. 
  • Building relationships is the long-game play that will continue to work. 
  • Lange and Fetter Motors in Quinte West, Ontario do an excellent job at getting creative. They have a team member who dresses up as an "Elf on a Shelf" during the Christmas season and it has the community talking.
  • Toyota had some great ads that shared an emotional story that people could relate to. They won by not making it about them but keeping the focus on the people whose story's they told. In this way, Toyota demonstrates that they "get it." They know how to make someone else the hero they can align with versus them being the hero. 


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Thanks, Whit Norrad!

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