Kayak Hopes for Super Bowl Overtime to Boost its Latest Campaign

By Kyle O'Brien 

Many of the of this season’s NFL playoff games were last-minute nail biters, and several went into overtime. Travel booking site Kayak is hoping the Super Bowl becomes one of those overtime games, as the brand is betting its ad dollars on an extended period.

Only one game, a Tom Brady comeback in 2017, went to overtime, so Kayak’s spots might not be seen in the game, but there’s always a chance. If the game does go to extra minutes, viewers will see creative that might ignite some heated discussions.

Kayak’s agency Supernatural used insight from its AI and machine learning platform to inform the creative for two spots that poke fun at “deniers.” One spot, which has already been running, shows a couple at a family dinner. The daughter warns her partner not to bring up the fact that her mother is a “Kayak denier.” When he accidentally does so, she leaves in a huff.

The second spot finds a dad incensed that the kids believe in Kayak, a service he yells vehemently “is not real.”

Supernatural and Kayak were both willing to push the limits of the culture wars with the spots in order to help the brand emerge through a crowded travel category.

“Our intent with this creative is to tap into culture and drive home Kayak’s value proposition through humor,” Matt Clarke, vp marketing at Kayak told Adweek. “Supernatural’s machine helped us find the insight that there are skeptics on every topic right now and got us to the creative. It’s irreverent and bold—Kayak’s brand voice sweet spot.”

Paul Caiozzo, co-founder of Supernatural told Adweek that the campaign hopes to get attention by tapping into a new culture around deniers and people not believing things that are true. “By using language inspired by the ‘denier world’ we were able to make the spots feel authentic. And most importantly it made them funny, so everyone could laugh at themselves, and remember Kayak in the process.”

If the game doesn’t go into overtime, the campaign will not run during the game, as there is no post-game contingency as part of the buy. Both spots will run nationally on other programming after the game.

“Watching the playoffs, it occurred to us that overtime might be more likely than in years past. We have our fingers crossed for overtime magic,” added Clarke.