Why Brands Should Include Social Video in Their Super Bowl Ad Spend

It will vastly extend Big Game investment

With brands shelling out north of $5 million for 30-second spots during the Super Bowl, this must be the year that they invest their time and energy into social media videos.

For one thing, they can reach a massive audience, one even bigger than the live game viewership. People watch more than 100 million hours of video on Facebook every day. And Snapchat, which reaches nearly half of 18- to 34-year-olds (compared to 6 percent by the top 15 TV networks), garners 10 billion daily video views.

Secondly, social video is getter better and better as the distribution platforms roll out offerings like livestreaming and ad products that drive business results. Finally, research by Simulmedia and Facebook reveals that a TV ad shown in proximity to a Facebook ad from the same brand can lift conversion by nearly 500 percent.

Stacey Weller

However, being successful on social platforms around the Super Bowl takes some planning. For example, developing in advance reactionary content based on the many different in-game events that are likely to occur. A well-timed post about something like a missed field goal or interception will go over well with engaged fans. Oreo’s timely tweet during the 2013 Super Bowl power outage was one of the most memorable events of the game, racking up over 16,000 retweets, because it was fun and relevant to what was happening in that moment. Imagine possible scenarios and be ready to piggyback off of them.

But also plan your social posts in advance for the expected as well. You already know that every Super Bowl follows the same schedule: singing of the national anthem, coin toss, halftime show and so on. Having posts queued up for these moments will help your brand stay on top of the action. Many brands and agencies even set up ‘War Rooms‘ during the game, with teams (we do it at Adaptly) available to promote on-the-fly messaging that may arise.

This should be the year of social video since all the platforms have refined their ability to serve better video experiences to their audiences. Twitter’s Amplify products let advertisers run pre-roll video ads against premium content based on specified content categories. By selecting categories and demographics that are relevant to the conversation you want to join around the Super Bowl, your brand’s ads will be tied to the most appropriate videos within the Amplify space.

In 2016, the Super Bowl attracted big audiences on Facebook and Instagram—60 million people on Facebook and 38 million on Instagram generated posts, likes and comments about the Big Game. Go for high-impact video ads on these platforms focusing on mobile placements (where 89 percent of user posts are uploaded), keeping users in-feed, and limit clickable items to avoid distracting people. Run content a few days before the Super Bowl, then during game time for optimal relevance and engagement.

Snapchat’s Snap Ads are an extremely powerful ad experience that enable brands to take up 100 percent of the screen. They give you the chance to get your brand in front of an audience of 150 million daily active users, including a highly engaged millennial audience. Use this opportunity to capture attention with short, concise video (about three to seven seconds) that showcases your brand story. All videos on Snapchat, including Snap Ads, play vertically with the sound automatically on. This adds another layer of storytelling for brands to take advantage of, so make sure your audio is just as engaging as your visuals.

Snap Ad attachments like long-form video and web views add another dimension to your brand’s story and capture attention. By including a long-form video that users can swipe up on to view extended content, you can share up to 10 minutes of video. Web views let users swipe up into a pre-loaded mobile site to interact further with your brand without leaving the app. Snaps are brief so include your logo within the first two seconds of an ad to ensure that it is seen. However, avoid opening with a logo as it appears jarring for users between their friends’ Stories.

And while all of these innovative advertising products equate to exciting opportunities, it is the core advantage of people-based marketing which makes them such a powerful complement to your Super Bowl TV ad. Where else can your video advertising leverage the most advanced audience targeting options, track unduplicated cross-device reach and enable you to optimize to true business outcomes in real-time?

Simply put, brands will set themselves up for a loss if their game plans don’t incorporate social video.

Stacey Weller (@StaceyWeller) is client strategy manager at Adaptly. She is currently based in Austin, Texas.