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Best Ads of the 2018 Super Bowl

Dozens of highly anticipated advertisements were featured in this year’s Super Bowl, with an estimated audience of 100 million people.

Ad placements during the Super Bowl are among the most highly coveted globally; the huge audience potential prices a mere 30-second placement at roughly $5 million, or $170 000 per second of air time. This does not factor in the costs of production, which often include pricey celebrity endorsements. The average cost of the same time slot for regular television is only $112 000, or thereabouts.

The quality and thoughtfulness behind most of these advertisements was, as expected, outstanding. Let’s take a look at five of the best.

1. Pepsi

This is the Pepsi was a campaign that really nailed the vibe of the product. After its marketing fiasco involving Kendall Jenner early last year, it was great to see Pepsi return to its classic ‘generations’ message. The thirty second commercial was a compilation of cameo-style throwbacks to earlier, successful Pepsi Generations campaigns, including appearances from Cindy Crawford (who was joined by her son in the re-imagining of her iconic 1992 Pepsi campaign) and Brittany Spears.

2. Skittles

The team behind this ad took an odd approach; nonetheless it was memorable, which is what makes it pretty damn successful. Ironically we never get to see the actual ad. The message given by the fake news (bonus points for relevance) anchor is that what we cannot see is more interesting than what we can see. Honestly, the intent behind the ad is hard to pinpoint, but watching it made me want to eat Skittles – so the ad served its purpose.

3. Tide’s Old Spice

Tide managed to appeal to two vastly different target markets in this short ad. Given the significant subculture behind the Old Spice campaigns, Tide was really relying on brand recognition from its older customer base to make this one work. Realistically, a lot of the audience probably enjoyed the reference to Tide Pods, millennials’ favourite non-edible snack, and the meme that owned January. Was this double-shooting intentional? Perhaps we’ll never know.

4. Tourism Australia

It was a cheeky Crocodile Dundee trailer turned Aussie tourism ad, featuring Chris Hemsworth. Need I say more?

“Not a lot of crocs out here, huh?

“Just 37 000 miles of pristine beach, mate”

5. Amazon’s Alexa

What would happen if Alexa, a smart home device, lost her voice? A bunch of willing celebrities would help out, of course! Who doesn’t want the soothing instructions of Gordon Ramsay to help them make a toastie? Or Rebel Wilson dirty talking your friends from her sky-high bubble bath at a classy house party?