Why It's Good to Get Your Commercial Banned From the Super Bowl

Not many people have a lot of money to throw around these days, so how is the recession affecting ad spending on the super-expensive Super Bowl?

Even after NBC lowered its ad prices, reports the Associated Press, FedEx and General Motors pulled their TV commercials, and Playboy isn’t having its annual Super Bowl party.

A 30-second Super Bowl commercial can cost $3 million. Worse yet, a new study by Stephen Blessing, an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Tampa, challenges the effectiveness of such ads. After questioning Super Bowl viewers from past years, he found that:

While an advertisement may be particularly funny or strike some other emotional chord, viewers frequently misidentified the exact product that each ad was promoting, or the specific brand.

Maybe G.M. should try the same ad strategy as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA): get your commercial banned from the Super Bowl. PETA made a sexually explicit commercial that NBC wasn’t comfortable with — one that, just maybe, PETA knew NBC wouldn’t be comfortable with? — and got lots of press without having to actually run the ad.

The PETA commercial claims that vegetarians have better sex. It doesn’t fit NBC’s standards, nor does it fit The Times‘s; but here’s Whoopi Goldberg‘s PG-rated reenactment on the The View:

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  1. Rachel Mary says:

    I think they wanted it to be rejected. They have a whole list of “Too Hot for TV” ads that have been banned. Check them out here http://www.peta.org/content/standalone/VeggieLove/Default.aspx

    Be forewarned. These video playlists go straight from vegetable erotica to the horrors of factory farming. Those videos are too much for me, but I suggest you check this out http://www.goveg.com/factoryFarming.asp .

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  2. Jennifer says:

    Companies like PETA capitalize on the “shock factors” that they get whether their campaigns are aired or rejected…they don’t have ABC or Fox at their boycott rallies of KFC, yet everyone knows/hears about them through the grapevine and they get their message across nonetheless. This is just another effective example of their cross-media marketing succeeding.

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  3. Sharon McEachern says:

    It used to be that even if you didn’t care much about the Super Bowl, you’d still be sure to tune in for the commercials. This year I think alot of those folks watched Puppy Bowl instead. I bet even Mickey Rourke would rather watch Puppy Bowl. Remember a few weeks ago during his Golden Globes acceptance speech: “…sometimes when a man’s alone, that’s all you got is your dog.” Did you know Rourke’s got the names of his seven dogs etched inside one of his rings: Loki, Jack The Great, his “wife” Angel, Chocolate, Mow Zone, Knee Knee and Rome. If you want to know how he gave one of his chihuahuas mouth-to-mouth resusitation for 45 minutes, read:


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  4. gina says:

    Another ad got banned by the Super Bowl.

    From http://www.gettoknowusfirst.org

    But it wasn’t because it was too hot.

    It is because someone at the NFL or NBC disagrees with civil rights for all. And is afraid of people who have different values.

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  5. James K says:

    Thank you for writing “affecting” instead of “impacting”.

    Many of us are grateful.

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  6. SJ says:

    “Playboy isn’t having its annual Super Bowl party. ”

    It’s hard to keep things up these days eh? ;)

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