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Super Bowl ads get their own pre-game show

Super Bowl ads get their own pre-game show
Google is adding a gallery of teaser video clips, such as this one from Pepsi, to the annual YouTube Ad Blitz channel devoted to Super Bowl commercials. PHOTO: PEPSI

Super Bowl ads get their own pre-game show

NEW YORK — Super Bowl advertisers have previously kept mum about their commercials until they are broadcast during the game. Now, many sponsors are filling social-media platforms with previews, teasers and coming attractions, hoping to stimulate additional interest.

In another sign of this strategy’s growing popularity, Google is adding, for the first time, a gallery of teaser video clips to the annual YouTube Ad Blitz channel devoted to Super Bowl commercials. The gallery, which went live last Friday, begins with preview videos from five advertisers — Butterfinger, Doritos, Intuit, Squarespace and Pepsi — planning to run commercials during Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb 2.

“What used to be a one-day event, with some post-game water-cooler chat, is now an eight- to 13-week experience,” said Mr Lucas Watson, Vice-President for Brand Solutions at Google.

Last year, ads for the Super Bowl were watched on YouTube more than 80 million times before the game was played, Mr Watson said — nearly a third of more than 265 million views for Super Bowl spots on the site. Commercials uploaded to YouTube before the game generated about 3.4 times more views on average than commercials that were released on the day of the game, he added.

At least three other advertisers — Axe, Jaguar and SodaStream — have joined the five appearing on YouTube Ad Blitz for their 2014 commercials.

A survey released by Unruly, a marketing technology company, confirmed the trend that is leading YouTube to offer one-stop viewing for Super Bowl ad teasers. According to Unruly, seven of the 20 ads from the 2013 Super Bowl that were most shared on social media were accompanied by teasers.

Also, the Unruly survey found that 60 per cent of the most-shared Super Bowl spots of all time were introduced before they were broadcast during the games.

YouTube will not ask viewers to vote for their favourites the same way it conducts a vote each year for favourites among the actual Super Bowl commercials.

In adding coming attractions to the YouTube Ad Blitz, YouTube joins Hulu, which will include previews again in the 2014 version of its annual Super Bowl ad programme, known as Hulu AdZone.

In the spirit of teaser-mania, Hulu has produced a video clip that promotes its annual vote on Hulu AdZone for favourite Super Bowl commercial.