In Today’s Super Bowl Quickfire, We Talk to Saatchi LA’s Tanya LeSieur

By Kiran Aditham 

The Big Game is almost here and in today’s Q+A with agency folks, we have a nice chat with Tanya LeSieur, who’s spent the last four years serving as director of integrated production at Saatchi & Saatchi L.A. As you’ll read below, he production vet has plenty to say about Super Bowl advertising.

 What ads you’re most looking forward to this year?

Hmmmm. This is a hard one.  I’m going to play Switzerland on this one and say all of them.

Oh. And our Toyota Superbowl Spot “Wish Granted” [above] produced by Saatchi LA featuring Kaley Cuoco in the first quarter of the game 😉   #wishgranted

Is there an advantage or disadvantage to releasing ads to social media ahead of time?

Sure there’s an advantage. It’s already been demonstrated from an analytics perspective that releasing your ads/work (if they are WORTHY of being shared i.e. engaging/funny/smart/ and CONSUMERS ACTUALLY DIG IT) in advance of the “big game” helps to drive metrics/views and creates conversation around your work.

Releasing so-so work into the social space and not putting serious thought and strategy into what you make and where you put it isn’t going to get you anywhere.

Bottom line, the work still has to stand on its own and “throwing up all over social media” won’t help advance your cause.  Check out the work out there now. Low YouTube numbers or low Tweets/ReTweets painfully show what’s not working with the public.

There can also be a disadvantage, which still may be viewed as an advantage if you subscribe to the idea that any press, good or bad, is good press.

VW is experiencing an interesting moment right now.  The “Get Happy” work is being discussed because it’s controversial.  It’s not just being discussed as another entry into the Big Game–it’s being discussed as a news story.

The question is, as a brand, do you really want to be caught in that kind of cross fire and is that contributing to brand recognition, likeability and ultimately supporting your client’s financial growth?

The other downside of releasing your work in advance is that people are already passing judgment on work that hasn’t even run on the game.

Is the ever-increasing Super bowl ad cost really worth what’s now $4 million a spot?

Hells Yes.  Last year 111.3 million people watched the Super Bowl. That’s a lot of eyes in one place.

Whether we intended it or not as advertisers and marketers we’ve created a new holiday in January. It’s not just Super Bowl Sunday. We’ve created Super Bowl month. Yup, we hallmarked the Super Bowl.

And now that we’ve extended this marketing time period we’re engaging with even more consumers. Both in paid and earned media.

Advertisers and clients who are willing to invest in this month long advertising celebration (not just on the big day, but figuring out seeding, HPTO’s, digital executions, social media and smart content creation) and can use ALL their channels and screens smartly and seamlessly will succeed in this marketing gauntlet!

Advertisers are spending way more than $4MM if you add everything up.

How important are the digital tie-ins to the TV spots, i.e. mobile and social, is value increasing?

I’m not a fan of just making mobile/social “things” just to say you made it. It has to make sense for your brand, your consumers and your community. So yes, they are valuable if implemented properly.

If you’re going to capitalize on PR, news and discussion around Super Bowl, the digital tie-ins are becoming necessary tools in the advertising tool belt. Use them smartly young Jedi.  Otherwise you’re spending a lot of money and making noise that no one is using/hearing or seeing.

What do you/did you think about the Pepsi/Beyoncé crowd sourced halftime show promo?

Makes sense for them.  I think they’re doing a good job with it.  It’s light weight, it’s fun, and it’s easy.

Your favorite/least favorite Super Bowl ads ever?

Favorite:  This will be hard. Anything that the agency I work at has produced now and will produce in the future.

Okay, Okay. Seriously, I still have a sweet spot for the 1999 Goodby Cracker Jack Spot “Really Big Bag”  (big shout out to Josh & Paul & O’Toole!)

Least Favorite: I just don’t get those Go Daddy spots.  Ever.  However, I’m sure I’m not the demographic…. 😉

One of the best parts of the Super Bowl is that it’s literally for everyone. Whatever floats your boat… There’s a little something for the people of all demographics, buying sensibilities, economic strata.

There’s boobs, fart jokes, smart humor, Patriotic Americanism, talking animals, fantastic ideas/visuals, great music, music videos, cute babies, crowd sourced material, hot guys and ladies and funny older people doing really crazy things and serious product launches … Live and let live baby! Embrace your Super Bowl madness. And once you’ve made your work (and gone live/shipped) sit back, relax and enjoy the ride. And remember you certainly can be optimizing as you go along!

Happy Super Bowl everyone!