Buzzworthy Game and Commercial

February 2, 2009

Wow. Last night we witnessed the longest play in Super Bowl history, the first safety in Super Bowl history, the Steelers capturing a record sixth Super Bowl victory and more twists and turns than any Super Bowl in history.

Yes, it was certainly a dramatic game, but the Fast Horse team wasn’t quite as excited for fourth quarter play to resume during commercial breaks as the rest of the country. 

Why? Were we too wrapped up in the alternate clash of titans that was on the air – the always spectacular Puppy Bowl? Well, that was pretty enticing, but it had to be saved for TIVO. The real reason we were hushing those around us during the commercials was the Troy Polamalu Coke Zero ad.

Fast Horse spent the week leading up to the big game helping the Coke marketing team generate some buzz for the commercial – including seeding a sneak peek and behind-the-scenes footage to targeted online media, bloggers and social media sites.  In case you missed it, the ad offers a fresh take on Coca-Cola’s iconic “Mean Joe Greene” ad from 1979 – with a surprise twist that perfectly fits the Coke Zero brand personality. 

The spot generated a ton of pre-game attention, always key to maximizing the costly ad buy for 30-seconds during the Super Bowl, even though the ending wasn’t revealed in advance.  The fact that the twist was secretive actually stirred up some significant curiosity, with predictions being made on message boards, forums and YouTube, where more than 100,000 people viewed the sneak preview.

We knew the storyline, but the first time we saw the actual ad was during the game, along with millions of others watching on NBC.  I loved it – and not just because Coca-Cola is a client. Although Polamalu may not have recorded a tackle during Sunday’s game, I’d say his performance on and off the field was a big hit.