So. This Sunday. The Super Bowl, yeah? The most-watched television event all year. Friends, neighbors, and family gather together to watch this classic American sport as they suck down Pabst and overload on calories. Two titan teams clash on the field in a battle for –
Alrighty, Heather, enough. You aren’t fooling anybody. I think the only sport that interests me less than football is synchronized swimming. (All those hyper-sized smiles really freak me out.) I am not a football fan, so I’m just not that “into” the Super Bowl game.
I’m far more interested in the ways in which the Super Bowl event is becoming social TV. Over the past several days, media-space has been humming with updates on brands’ commercials, previews, and previews for commercials. Lost Remote went so far as to call the 2012 Super Bowl “the year’s biggest social TV event.” Hefty declaration, that. Yet considering that Tim Tebow’s touchdown pass during the playoffs triggered a Twitter record of 9,420 tweets per second, there is obviously a massive audience for football with whom advertisers can engage.
And boy, are they taking advantage of that viewing mass.
Coca Cola has launched a campaign in which their cute polar bear mascots will watch the Super Bowl in real time and react to the game on the microsite CokePolarBowl.com. People can check in with the bears across several media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter. Even Coke’s commercials will vary depending upon which team is winning.
Chevy has introduced a mobile app that will post facts, tweet polls, and ask trivia questions about the game for viewers. Every time a viewer answers correctly, she will be entered into a drawing for thousands of prizes. And I’ve already blogged about Volkswagen’s commercial for a commercial.
Activist groups are also capitalizing on the heightened integration of TV and social media. MissRepresentation.org, a campaign that seeks to empower women by challenging sexist and restrictive representations of women throughout media, has asked for viewers to pay attention to the ads and call out any that misrepresents or demeans women as part of their #NotBuyingIt campaign.
As written on their site, the campaign encourages anyone: “If you see a product or ad…that misrepresents or degrades women, use Twitter to post a description or upload a picture of the offensive item. Use the hashtag #notbuyingit so that we can all follow along!” The campaign has already called out Kia for its overly-sexualized “preview,” as well as GoDaddy.com. (And rightfully so, in my opinion.) More than the actual game, I will be following the #NotBuyingIt campaign this upcoming Sunday.
Whether you interact with animated polar bears or tag sexist media content, brands and organizations are counting on viewers to engage with them via second-screens this Super Bowl Sunday. The question is: will they?