As you’re well aware, advertisers usually line up to buy time on the Super Bowl because it attracts the year’s largest television audience. Despite costing millions, some marketers use the Big Game to launch new products or new advertising campaigns in hopes that viewers will remember their commercials. However, the key is standing out to the point where people will recall the ads and buy the products.

However, a research firm found that some ads in Super Bowl XLVIII especially car commercials did not fare well as hoped. Surveying 3,000 people before the Big Game and then following up with 1,000 afterwards, the firm found that the automakers and established products didn’t do well regarding brand awareness and purchase intent. On the other hand, new brands or unfamiliar products did much better with awareness and recall.

It’s probably why car companies for the most part are sitting out Super Bowl XLIX with three brands buying time as compared to 11 for XLVIII. Under the study, car ads had six of the ten lowest-rated Super Bowl commercials, however, Chevolet, Toyota and Kia managed to finish in the top 10. Part of the failure might have been a failure to stand out from the crowd or they wanted to be so entertaining, they failed to get their message across. No matter, the automakers have decided to stay away this season.

Newer companies like BeatsMusic and SquareSpace were among the top four in brand awareness from Super Bowl XLVIII and that is why SquareSpace is back for XLIX. It will be joined by Wix.com.

While the Budweiser Puppy Love ad scored very well in the study, there’s no guarantee that animals can work either. There was an abundance of animal-themed ads in SB XLVIII and not all of them scored well.

Even with the failure of some ads, the Super Bowl will still attract marketers in hopes of striking a chord with viewers and making their commercial viral. It’s a hit-or-miss proposition, but for a company like SquareSpace, it’s a gamble that paid off to the point where it wants to return, but for car companies, it’s another story and one in which they prefer to watch from the sidelines.

[Advertising Age]

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the three Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.