Groupon and Their Superbowl XLV Ad


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For as long as I can remember superbowl advertising was a way that companies created their brand impression, sometimes even their first impression. I can remember laughing hysterically at the first eTrade ads during the game and feeling compelled to see what GoDaddy did after their first ads years back. For years and years, major consumer brands like Coke, Pepsi, GM and others used the superbowl to connect with consumers, introduce new products and just to plain associate their brand with mainstream fun. When I worked at Levi’s we spent the fall working with the agency on the latest advertising feat we would pull off during the superbowl. My favorite time was when the “dot com” team had to work overtime in anticipation of the traffic the superbowl ad would create. This year it was fun to see many brands (although not all of them, which was a missed opportunity, but many) using a link to their Facebook page as a call to action to learn more and to join their community.

Then came Groupon. Let me start by saying that I am a fan of Groupon. Besides the fact that I love any Bay Area company that in a short time is able to: 1) provide real value & 2) experience success; I actually get their offers everyday and think that it is another great way to create consumer power through social media. Just the sheer numbers of people social media can reach and the fact that we, the consumer, can use social media to get better deals is totally up my alley (I’m one of those people who won’t buy anything online without checking online coupon sites for the quick promo code.)

So Groupon, why did you, and for that matter your agenc,y allow you to use one of the most intense topics of the socio-political arena today as a way to advertise discounts on restaurant prices is beyond me – really? Why not images of people eating great food all over the world with a story about how you can experience the world for less than the cost of a map?

So as usual I ran a quick look at the chatter on the topic yesterday….and just like me, there was no joy about this ad out there. If you searched #fail yesterday on Twitter talk about this ad came up in large volume…and that showed in the word cloud from yesterday’s event too. Of course, just after fail came offensive, royally offensive. But, if you are counting mentions, Groupon did do really well – but mentions with such a negative tone, in IMHO, don’t get you anything but back pedaling.

Groupon Fail1 Groupon and Their Superbowl XLV AdGroupon Offensive1 Groupon and Their Superbowl XLV Ad

I do love that Groupon is donating money to the Tibetian and other causes, but real mention came of this only after the outrage online. If you haven’t seen the ad, have a look at it below or on You Tube.

What did you think about the Groupon ad? Or for that matter, any of the ads in yesterday’s #brandbowl?

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Michelle deHaaff
Michelle leads marketing at Medallia, the leader in SaaS Customer Experience Management and has over 18 years of experience in marketing, branding, product management and strategic partnering in Silicon Valley. Michelle came to Medallia from Attensity where as Vice President of Marketing and Products she led the transformation of the brand and the products to be the leader in Social Analytics and Engagement. Michelle also led Marketing at AdSpace Networks, was a GM of Products at Blue Martini Software and worked at Ernst & Young as a CRM practice manager.


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