Fantasy Case Study: Would a Super Bowl Commercial Work for a Small Business?
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With a price tag at an eye-popping $5M for a 30 second spot for a commercial during this Super Bowl, obviously a commercial is not in my current budget. But what if the funds were available? What would a campaign for an apparel site like I currently market need to look like and produce to make this massive investment make sense?
First, the reach is out of this world, so the value of over 110 million people being exposed to the company for the first time is incredibly valuable. Obviously, this is nearly impossible to measure. The additional press of a ad that “wins” makes this even harder to predict. For now, my analysis will be based more on trackable ROI and not the other value. The exposure would have to be the icing on the cake, not the main reason for a small company to invest such a massive amount.
This value could be brought through multiple ways. Through a multi-tier marketing approach, we would supplement the ad with a Facebook, Twitter, and Pintrest social campaign. While we would likely spend to help boost these, lets assume that this is all organic. We would run teasers leading up to the big game and have a full supplement over the next 3 months to help nurture any new social followers who watch the commercial and look for more on social.
If we assume that the value of a Superbowl watcher is no greater than a paid visitor from a targeted Facebook ad, a new follower would need to cost around $1 for FB and $2 for Twitter. So if “building social” was the one and only goal, the “break even” point for a social campaign would be 2,000,000 FB followers and 1,000,000 Twitter followers.
This would mean we’d need around 3M social followers out of 110M potential eyeballs. That would mean 2.7% of the people who saw the ad would need to not only get to our social accounts, but interact with them. The chance? About as good as the Colts winning the Superbowl this year.
Next would be driving the traffic directly to the site and focus on sales. Using some assumptions, lets use a very conservative number of $8,000,000 in sales over the lifespan of the campaign to be successful. At an average cart value of $200, that means we need to tie back 40,000 sales to this 30 second spot to even consider it.
At a industry standard 3% conversion rate, we’d need to drive 1.33M visitors to the site from the ad/pr/social strategy. Again, with 110M eyeballs, that’s 1.3% of all visitors visiting the site. This again seems like quite a stretch, as a targeted campaign with top position on Google AdWords (where a link is readily available to click) isn’t going to come close. And all 110M people watching aren’t going to even speak the language, let alone wear the type of products we’re selling.
This model becomes a bit more appealing if you add an email newsletter component to gather leads on a weekly marketing drip list. And when you take in to consideration each new user will have a much higher average lifetime value, the strategy becomes a much more long-term solution. But with any of my marketing campaigns, I try to at least break even on the initial campaign with the ROI coming from return visitors and dripped marketing campaign.
The combination of the publicity, brand awareness, social strategy, and sales would all be included in a real life example. And with a comprehensive drip campaign on each lead through email and social, as well as a lifetime value make it a bit more appealing than originally thought.
But without a huge margin product and/or a much wider target market, a boutique apparel site doesn’t make much sense. If this was myth buster, buying a Super Bowl ad would get a big old BUSTED.
That said, I’m interested to watch how these companies do leverage social media & take advantage of their time in the spotlight. There’s definitely something to be learned from the success and failure to others.
So while Peyton is attempting to win one before riding off in the sun, I’ll make sure to pay attention to the commercials and see what lessons I can learn on the biggest marketing stage.