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Social Media During the Super Bowl: A Second Screen Playbook

Written by: Juliana Casale, Director of Marketing

This article originally appeared on Social Media Today.

Amidst scandalous accusations of deflated footballs (cleverly dubbed #deflategate on social media), the New England Patriots will soon be bound for Glendale, Arizona to compete against the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX. While football fans gear up for game day, big-name brands are putting down some serious dough.

Nanigans money circleHow to spend $4 million in less than a minute

The stakes have never been higher for television advertisers hoping to reach a captive audience. CNN Money reports that popular cable channel FOX charged $4 million for a 30-second spot during last year’s Super Bowl, and Variety pegs NBC’s rates for this year at $4.5 million per 30 seconds.

Despite the prohibitive cost, plenty of brands are on board for Super Bowl XLIX. Among others, newcomers Carnival, Mophie, and are slated to join veterans GoDaddy, Anheuser-Busch, Doritos and Toyota during the Patriots-Seahawks showdown.

Last year’s Seahawks-Broncos match surpassed 2012’s Super Bowl as the most-watched television program in America, to the tune of 111.5 million viewers, so expectations around ad exposure are extremely high. Luckily, the effects of a well-executed ad campaign reach far beyond 30 seconds thanks to the Internet (and the end of TV viewing as a solitary activity).

Nanigans mobile circleHow to get 207, 535 shares on Facebook

Market research group TNS reports that 56% of Americans use at least one digital device while watching television (termed “screen stacking” or “second screen behavior”). And according to Nielsen, consumers use laptops, smartphones and tablets most often to look up information, web browse or network on social media as they keep an eye on the TV.

As evidenced by the 2014 Oscars, social media is quickly integrating into the viewing experience and amplifying live events. While Ellen’s selfie stunt has been placed in Twitter’s win column for number of retweets generated (3,366,55 and counting), Facebook delivered 207, 535 shares and 2,187,237 likes — also well above average for Ellen’s typical page engagement. Creating social conversations around televised content is clearly a powerful way for brands to resonate with consumers.

Nanigans amplifyHow to capitalize on second screen stacking

Adding a social media component to TV ads is an extremely smart way to keep people talking about your brand long after a televised event or show has come and gone.

Here are additional ways to maximize a major ad buy or simply surf the wave of Super Bowl mania:

  • Run the ad or a teaser ahead of time to build word of mouth,
  • Use video viewers optimized for Facebook,
  • Post a longer version of the ad online,
  • Try out Facebook’s new Super Bowl audience, and
  • Direct viewers to watch your TV spot at a certain time via social media.

The Super Bowl is arguably the one time of the year when people actively seek out paid advertising, so getting a timely, dynamic multimedia message out there is crucial. It’s easier to get people to repeat viewing behavior once they’re in the mood to watch commercials on purpose, so take advantage of that mentality by driving further engagement where 52% of smartphone owners and 53% of tablet owners are likely to be.

Interested in learning more about the link between TV and social media?

Read “Blurred Lines: The rise of social TV”



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