As of today at noon ET, Super Bowl ads on YouTube have been watched more than 212 million times. There are now more than 100 Super Bowl-related commercials and teasers posted by brands to YouTube. And the top five in views are:
According to Unruly, Budweiser's "Puppy Love" was also the runaway winner of Super Bowl 2014. The ad, created by Anomaly, benefited greatly from its early release date (January 29th, 2014). It managed 1.14 million online shares before the game had even begun, which makes it the second most shared ad in Super Bowl history prior to kick-off.
The cute commercial, which tells the story of an unlikely friendship between a horse and a puppy, was not only the most shared video online, but also the ad which attracted the most TV coverage. The ad has so far generated 1.31 million shares, according to data supplied by Unruly's Viral Video Chart, making it the sixth most shared Super Bowl ad of all time (so far). It crowned an incredible Super Bowl for the Anheuser-Busch InBev brand, which has now overtaken Volkswagen as the most shared online Super Bowl brand of all time.
However, Budweiser's domination has not been just online. According to data supplied by media tracking company Civolution, in the U.S., "Puppy Love" appeared on national television channels 75 times prior to the game and on local broadcasts 1,200 times, which is nearly 4 times the next most popular ad, Volkswagen's "Wings" commercial, with 318 local broadcasts.
The global appeal of Scarlett Johansson proved highly valuable for SodaStream on international television channels, leading to 755 broadcasts outside of the US. "Puppy Love" was the second most broadcast ad outside the US with 236 airings.
According to Unruly, here are the top five most shared ads of Super Bowl 2014:
"Year after year we are seeing more Super Bowl ads being released ahead of the actual event," Andy Nobbs, CMO of Civolution, said in a press release. "And it's paying dividends in terms of reach for the brands. With ads being broadcast across the globe to millions of viewers who would not normally see the Super Bowl, this earned media is really maximising ROI and awareness for the brands."
Sarah Wood, co-founder and COO at Unruly, said, "With consumers sharing videos on a second screen device while they're watching the big game, it's not about a battle of the channels, it's about brands adopting an omnichannel approach, embracing TV and digital and reaching consumers wherever they happen to be socializing and sharing content." She added, "The smart brands have adopted a flare and connect approach. They use TV around a tentpole event to drive reach instantaneously, deploying digital to drive incremental reach, amplify their TV activity, and make their content discoverable and easy to share 365 days of the year."
So, that just leaves the original question unanswered: Which of the 55 commercials that aired during the Super Bowl will win the most votes in the post-game voting on the YouTube Ad Blitz?
As we've already seen this year, momentum can shift in this alternative reality, but that doesn't preclude the vote ending with lopsided results. In fact, if digital marketers had looked at the YouTube Trends Map this morning, they would have seen that Budweiser Super Bowl XLVIII Commercial -- "Puppy Love" was the most viewed video in 141 out of 150 regions and the most shared video in 128 out of 150 regions:
Meanwhile, in another alternative reality, the YouTube Trends Blog was featuring Coca-Cola - It's Beautiful - Official :60. The YouTube Trends Team said, "Coca-Cola's 2014 Super Bowl spot was one of many trending ads from the big game."
Meanwhile, in yet another alternative reality, 2014 Volkswagen Game Day Commercial: Wings is included in an expandable homepage masthead ad, a 970x250 pixel in-page desktop unit running the full width of the YouTube homepage below the navigation bar. If a viewer clicks on it, the unit expands to 970x500 pixels.
So, the post-game isn't over until it's over. And digital marketers as well as football fans can vote early and vote often. This means that we may want to keep a close eye on trends until the final results are announced on Feb. 14.
This article was originally published on Search Engine Watch.
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Greg Jarboe is president of SEO-PR, which provides search engine optimization, public relations, video marketing, and social media marketing services. He's the author of "YouTube and Video Marketing: An Hour a Day," a faculty member at Rutgers University and Market Motive, as well as a frequent speaker at SES conferences.
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